‘Deplorable act’: Married man puts hand up student’s dress
A married man put his hand under a young women's dress and touched her vagina in "a drunken baboonish act", a court heard.
Adam Luke Dow, 36 pleaded guilty to several charges, including sexual assault, in the Maroochydore Magistrates Court on Thursday.
Police prosecutor Amanda Brewer told the court Dow was at the Duporth Tavern on November 23, last year, when he sexually assaulted another patron.
"It was a deplorable act, it was by a mature aged male towards a younger female who was merely attending the Duporth Tavern as part of night out with her friends to celebrate the completion of some university degrees," she said.
"The victim at the time of the offending had stopped in the doorway of two adjourning areas of the venue.
"She was in my submission, completely caught off guard when she felt a hand in between her legs from behind.
"She described the hand as being under her dress and briefly touching her on the vagina."
Ms Brewer said the victim initially thought it was her partner being funny but after she turned around, she realised it was Dow, who was unknown to her.
"The victim described feeling immediately sick, she felt embarrassed and ashamed at the thought of what had happened," she said.
The court heard the victim then reported the matter to police.
Barrister Robert Carroll told the court Dow had written an apology letter to the victim and would be paying $1000 in compensation.
The court heard Dow was heavily intoxicated the night of the assault.
"It's an explanation, not an excuse," Mr Carroll said.
Mr Carroll submitted character references from Dow's wife, his son and his sister-in-law, describing him as a hardworking and generous man.
"What his wife says in her reference is that he's a different person when he's abstaining and that him continuing to abstain is very important to their relationship," he said.
Magistrate Maxine Baldwin said it seemed Dow had learnt his lesson about the dangers of alcohol.
"This would be one of the most humiliating, embarrassing things that I've seen in recent years," she said.
"It is just so inappropriate and in so many ways unfortunate and totally out of character.
"It just shows what alcohol can do."
The court heard Dow had a limited criminal history.
Ms Baldwin described the assault as a "stupid nightclub, drunken baboonish act".
"We don't expect that women, especially young women are going to be touched by men at a bar whether they're drunk or not," she said.
"It cannot be minimised in any way shape or form."
Ms Baldwin said she could see Dow was remorseful for what he did.
She sentenced him to eight months jail, wholly suspended for two years.
He was also fined $500.