Teenage girl raped, left unconscious in park

IT WAS dark when a 15-year-old girl woke up under a tree in an Ipswich park, her underwear tossed in a nearby play ground.

The girl had been unconscious, having hit her head as she fell to the ground after a 38-year-old man punched her in the stomach.

He raped her as she lay unconscious on the ground, before he left her there.

The teenage girl was the man's third sexual assault victim in a period of a few months in late 2014 and would ultimately be one of seven he later admitted to sexually penetrating or indecently dealing.

He made a habit of targeting girls he had been introduced to through a mutual friend or girls he already knew, often picking them up from their home or a train station, then giving them alcohol and cigarettes and assaulting them in public parks or his home.

His victims were as young as 12 and the eldest was 22 years old.

In sentencing in Ipswich District Court on Thursday, Crown prosecutor Noel Needham said the man had "limited emotional capacity to deal with rejection".

In one instance, the man told a 15-year-old babysitter who was looking after his partner's child "he wouldn't be with his parter much longer" and wanted to be with the victim.

She rejected him.

In a separate incident, he became upset when another 15-year-old girl rejected his advances.

"She doesn't want to be with me, you should bash her," he told the girl's friend.

The girls ran away and he chased after them, later raping the girl in the park.

Mr Needham said DNA evidence proved the man raped her but it could not suggest what body part he used.

The man was taken into custody in January 2015.

Defence lawyer Stephen Kissick said his client "overreacted to rejection".

"It's very bad form and shows a degree of callousness in his nature," Mr Kissick said.

"He has in some ways engaged in a predatory nature but in my submission it is opportunistic."

The man, who cannot be named to protect the identity of his victims, pleaded guilty to 16 offences including assault, indecent treatment of a child under 16, sexual assault and rape.

Judge Alexander Horneman-Wren sentenced the man to four years and six months' jail, declaring 1031 days spent in pre-sentence custody as time already served.

A parole eligibility date was set at the day of the sentence on Thursday.

For 24-hour support in Queensland phone DVConnect on 1800 811 811, MensLine on 1800 600 636 or the national hotline 1800RESPECT  on 1800 737 732.

Topics:  editors picks ipswich ipswich court ipswich crime

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