Child abuse trial opens with video evidence

| 27/07/2016 | 0 Comments
Cayman News Service

Cayman Islands courts, George Town

(CNS): Two local men appeared in court Wednesday facing several charges relating to what the crown claims was the systematic abuse of a young female relative that could have started when she was as young as nine years old. In a sensitive case in which the men cannot be named because of the possible identification of the girl, who is now a teenager, the crown opened the case by playing taped video evidence of the victim when she was just 11 years old recorded by police soon after she had told one of the volunteers at her after school club that she was being sexually assaulted.

The crown told the court that the relatives, one of whom lived in the same house as the child, forced her to perform oral sex and touched her inappropriately, and that both men had tried on at least one occasion to rape the little girl.

The victim was a student at a government primary school when she told an after school club staff member that she was “being troubled” by the men she described as boys at the time. Crying uncontrollably, she had revealed the abuse to the volunteer, who, based on the training she had been given, did not press the child for more details but passed on the information to a school counselor, who spoke with the girl the next day.

The child revealed that the male relatives had been touching her, asking her to touch their private parts and forcing her to suck their penises. Following the girl’s report, the school counselor contacted the girl’s mother. The case was then reported to the police and the child made further allegations, triggering an investigation.

Before playing the child’s first taped evidence, crown counsel Scott Wainwright disclosed a long drawn-out case, where the girl first gave taped evidence in November 2012 but nothing happened for eighteen months. The child was asked to give a second video interview in 2014 before the men were eventually arrested and in turn interviewed by the police. They both flatly denied abusing the child and have pleaded not guilty to the charges.

In the video interviews with the police the girl repeatedly stated that the men had forced her to perform oral sex on them and that they had touched her in ways that she did not like, and frequently said the men were “troubling her”.

She also said that after she had told the school counselor and before she was brought to the police, her mother was angry and had slapped her for telling someone about the abuse. She revealed that she had told her mother about what the male relatives were doing when she was perhaps 9 or 10 but her mother had not done anything.

The case continues.

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Category: Courts, Crime

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