On 27 August 2013, a 15-year–old Aboriginal boy was sent behind bars for seven years over a horrific attempted rape and beating he unleashed on an 88-year-old great-grandmother in her own home.
In sentencing the Aboriginal youth, Perth Children’s Court President Denis Reynolds described the attack as “disgusting", "cowardly" and the "worst" of its kind”.
The Aboriginal boy had broken into the 88-year-old woman’s Great Southern home of more than 66 years while a co-offender syphoned fuel from machinery in a nearby shed.
The court heard his crime had seen the elderly woman punched to the ground, repeatedly kicked and with items including a coffee table thrown at her head.
The great-grandmother suffered bruises all over her body after the boy repeatedly punched and kicked her, and threw objects at her, including a ceramic pot at her head.
In a victim impact statement, the woman said her head was "exploding'' and she thought she was going to die.
"He was just kicking me and kicking me,'' she said.
The woman also described suffering nightmares, lacking self-confidence, feeling like a burden on her family and being physically weak and confused after the attack.
The teenager had then tried to rape her twice and was caught at the scene after the victim’s grandson and granddaughter–in-law responded to a Silver Chain alarm that she had pressed without her attacker knowing.
Judge Reynolds labelled the crime as appalling. “Every reasonably minded member of the community would be absolutely appalled,” he said.
“The victim was a mother, a grandmother, a great-grandmother. People like that are very special,” he said.
“Healthy communities like ours are instinctively very protective of people like that.”
Judge Reynolds said it was unlikely that the woman would be able to return to her home of 60 years or live independently again.
The judge said the ordeal was extremely humiliating and degrading for the "extremely vulnerable'' woman.
"The community would be rightly disgusted and revolted by what you did,'' he said.
Judge Reynolds said the boy's behaviour was "cowardly, violent and persistent''.
The Aboriginal youth was convicted of aggravated burglary, unlawful assault occasioning bodily harm and two counts of attempted sexual penetration without consent.
He was also convicted of another aggravated burglary and sentenced to six months to be served concurrently with the seven-year sentence.
The court heard that he had recorded a zero alcohol reading.