A mother has described in court how she is ‘not the same person’ since being sexually assaulted by her son’s former friend.
A mother has described in court how she is ‘not the same person’ since being sexually assaulted by her son’s former friend.

Tradie guilty of sexually assaulting mate’s mum

A GOLD Coast mum has told a court how she felt broken and scared after being sexually assaulted by her son's former mate.

The 51-year-old woman had been celebrating at birthday party in the lead up to the attack which was described as opportunistic and "very serious".

The man responsible for the sex assault was 22-year-old Jai Dennis Hinge, a cabinet maker who lives with his parents at Ormeau.

The court was told Hinge and the woman had been at the Star Casino to celebrate the birthday on December 23, 2018.

Hinge pleaded guilty in Southport District Court on April 30 to sexual assault contact of genitalia or anus with mouth.

He was sentenced in the same court on Wednesday.

During the sentence the court was told CCTV footage from the night showed the pair walking arm-in-arm, kissing and holding hands.

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Crown prosecutor Kathleen Christopherson said the victim was so intoxicated footage also showed her falling over twice.

Ms Christopherson said Hinge and the woman travelled in an Uber back to the woman's mother's house where he carried her inside and put her on the couch.

"She fell heavily intoxicated and was unable to move or talk," Ms Christopherson said.

The woman explained in a victim impact statement that was read out in court the assault had an ongoing impact on her.

Details of the effects were also heard by Hinge's parents who sat in the public gallery during the sentence.

"Still to this day, I break emotionally and cry about the impact of this crime and I struggle to know what to do.

"I'm not the same person I used to be."

Defence barrister James Veivers said CCTV footage showed both Hinge and the victim were both severely intoxicated.

He said Hinge told police during an interview he couldn't remember much of the night and didn't think he did what was alleged, but couldn't "rule it out".

Judge Brian Deveraux said the sexual assault was very serious and aggravated by contact with the victim's genitalia.

"The plea of guilty is accepted that it demonstrates your remorse and acceptance of responsibility for what you did," Mr Deveraux said.

"The point was made during submissions that voluntary intoxication by alcohol or drugs is not a mitigating factor.

"It doesn't reduce your culpability."

Hinge smiled and sighed with relief as he left the court with his family after escaping jail time.

He was convicted and sentenced to two years in jail, wholly suspended for three years. 

*For 24-hour sexual violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.   

jodie.callcott@news.com.au

 

Originally published as Tradie guilty of sexually assaulting mate's mum



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