Sex with girl, 13, extends jail term
FORBIDDEN love has left Christopher Matthew Brooks with an extended time in jail.
Brooks, 25, had originally pleaded not guilty to a charge of unlawful carnal knowledge arising from his having sex with a 13-year-old girl in Toowoomba on May 29 last year. He claimed he was told the girl was 17.
However, after the Toowoomba District Court jury at his trial was "hung", Brooks yesterday pleaded guilty to the charge, accepting that he should have known that the girl was not 16 or over.
His guilty plea saved the need for another trial.
Judge Sarah Bradley accepted the girl had told police she was "sexually experienced" and that she was a willing participant in the sex.
Brooks, who had long-standing drug addictions, had a lengthy criminal history and had been out of jail on parole just two months when he had unprotected sex with the girl.
His barrister Robbie Davies said his client suffered HepatitisC and epilepsy and his drug addiction started when he was just 12 and his addictions ranged from amphetamine to heroin.
"He told me he went into jail with a speed habit and came out with a heroin habit," Mr Davies told the court.
His client, however, had no previous sex offences and was not likely to offend in such a way again, he said.
Judge Bradley noted, by his history, Brooks was unlikely to get parole and that she would take that into account at sentence.
Telling Brooks "girls of that age need the protection of the law", Judge Bradley sentenced him to 12 months jail, to start from the conclusion of his current sentence on July 31, but ordered he be eligible to apply for release on parole as of August 1.