A young woman got a teenage acquaintance and three of his friends drunk and had sex with some of them after a party, a court has heard.
Laura O'Donnell, 20, was today released with a suspended jail term and a community-based order after a County Court judge found that her troubled background had been responsible for her offending.So there's no chance she just wanted a toy boy shag and was a bit young herself to play Mrs Robinson, then? Troubled background? Even from ten thousand miles away I reckon I'll hear the Ambush Predator's teeth grinding when she reads that - I know these stock pleas of mitigation can be a hot button issue with Julia.
In sentencing, Judge Sue Pullen described the offences as "very serious and disturbing" and said the woman's behaviour was "quite unacceptable".And here we have an example of law being written with assumption that the perpetrator will necessarily be male. 'Sexual penetration of a child under 16.' Not with a child, of a child, and if Laura O'Donnell's offences involved plain old vanilla sex, as I suspect they probably did, then she would in fact have been the penetratee.* Yes, of course penetration of various sorts can be done by a female, but I suspect this wording originally had intromission by adult males in mind, and in case there's any doubt that garden variety sex between an adult female and a male below the age of consent counts as her penetrating him there's this case (coincidentally heard by the same judge).
The boys, aged 12, 15, 14 and 14, were plied with alcohol on three separate occasions. The first two incidents involved one of the victims and the third, all four.
[O'Donnell] pleaded guilty to four counts of sexual penetration of a child under 16 and five counts of committing an indecent act with a child under 16.
The court heard [Kimberly] Gale met the boy and his mother through their involvement in a suburban football club.That was only last November, by the way, less than a year before the O'Donnell trial and further knocking the idea that women are saintly beings and above such things just because they're women.
Prosecutor Susan Borg said Gale had become friends with the mother at the club and after overhearing her say she was having trouble getting him to school, Gale offered to drive him there.
For three or four weeks in March and April, Gale drove the boy to school every morning, and on at least one occasion put her hand on his leg and told him he was "hot", Ms Borg said.
On one occasion Gale, then 23, asked the boy if he wanted to spend more time with her, and he replied "yes". She drove him to her family's home. The pair had sex then she drove him to school.
Two weeks later, they went to Gale's home again on the way to school and had sex.
Gale pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual penetration of a child under 16.
There's no question that both women committed offences in strict legal terms, and it certainly seems like they took advantage of people who might not have been boys but probably weren't quite men either. I'm not going into a discussion of consent laws here, I'm just interested in the female offending aspect and how the law and society think about it - or, as the case may be, prefer not to think about it all that much. Despite what these two women were charged with it doesn't sound like they did the actual penetrating, and if they had you'd expect them to have received rather heavier sentences than the two years and five months, all suspended, that O'Donnell got and the two years and two months, 16 months suspended, that Gale got. It's not like Judge Pullen is afraid of handing down some serious time as the minimum 16 years served of a 19 year sentence she gave one knife wielding, recidivist rapist shows.** That being so I reckon we can rule out any nastier ideas that either of these women were using strap ons or anything along those lines, which as far as I can tell would make it a rape charge anyway. No, this is almost certainly vanilla sex between adult females and males under the legal age of consent, but while this would be called something else in other places - statutory rape, perhaps, or simple underage sex - the charge here sounds like it suggests male offenders as the norm rather than just a majority. And since even the Graun these days concedes that the proportion of female sex offenders could be as 20% or more and you don't have to look far to find it suggested that it could be twice that. The fairer sex probably is fairer generally, but you wouldn't want a cop to look at a suspect and go: 'Sarge, I'm pretty sure those are breasts - we've got the wrong man!'
Oh, and just for amusement let's briefly revisit the case of Kimberley Gale just one more time.
Her lawyer, Amy Wood, told Judge Sue Pullen her client had had a difficult childhood...That bang you just heard was an Ambush Predator going through her roof.
* Out of curiosity I looked up the actual law, which seems to be Section 45 of Victoria's 1958 Crimes Act. Interestingly, though the offence is 'Sexual penetration of a child under 16' the very first subsection reads: 'A person who takes part in an act of sexual penetration with a child under the age of 16 is guilty of an indictable offence.' It seems almost as if it was expected to be mostly men but even a half century ago someone recognised that the wording of the law needed to allow for the possibility of female offenders as well.
** No, I wouldn't have been at all sorry either if she'd locked him up for far longer, though it was only 6 years short of the maximum for rape in Victoria, but because he's 55 already that minimum 16 year term means he'll be at least 71 before he can be released, and since his own behaviour made him ineligible for parole during his previous prison term he might still end up doing the full stretch and not getting out until 74. Either way, there's a fair chance the bastard will cark it while he's still inside even if he does genuinely reform this time.