Courier Mail, The (Brisbane), 18/07/2006, pg. 9

A MAN, 19, who allegedly raped a seven-year-old girl last Friday at his home in a small Darling Downs town was released on bail yesterday.

The unemployed man, who cannot be named, was charged with the rape of a child under 12 and indecent treatment of a child under 12 when he appeared in the Toowoomba Magistrate’s Court.

Police allege the girl was assaulted while she and her siblings were being babysat at the home of the accused man and his wife.

Toowoomba police opposed bail on the grounds that the alleged victim was so young and that the accused had an obligation of care at the time of the alleged rape.

Prosecutor Sgt Morrie Turner told the court the accused should not be granted bail because of the strength of the evidence, that the complaint was made soon after the alleged offence and that the

complaint was supported by medical evidence.

But defence solicitor Chris Woolley argued for bail saying his client would contest the charges and that he was a very young person of 19, was supported by his wife, his mother-in-law and sister-in-law, that he had no children and no children in his care.

Mr Woolley said the complainant’s statement and medical evidence were yet to be tested and the accused was entitled to the presumption of innocence.

In granting bail, Magistrate Greg McIntyre said that although the offence was very serious there was no reason to refuse bail because the accused had a place to live, had prospects of work and had

not breached bail conditions in the past.

Mr McIntyre granted bail on condition that the accused have no contact with the complainant or her parents and that he report to police every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

He was remanded to appear on September 11.

Copyright 2006 / Courier Mail