Childcare worker cultivated relationship with 4-year-old abuse victim, Tasmanian court heard

A former Tasmanian childcare worker developed a relationship with a girl by spending more time with her and giving her special attention before he allegedly sexually abused her, a jury has heard.

Key points:

The former childcare worker is alleged to have kissed the young woman on the lips, inappropriately kissed and touched her and exposed himself to her. The court heard the girl disclosed the alleged abuse after several conversations with police and her parentsThe girl presented video evidence which was played to the jury in court

WARNING: This story contains details about alleged child sexual abuse that may cause distress.

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, faced the first day of a week-long trial in the Supreme Court in Hobart on Tuesday after pleading not guilty to one count of sexual abuse persistent of a child.

The abuse is alleged to have taken place between July and October 2020.

Support services for sexual assault:

The court heard the four-year-old girl attended a daycare in the greater Hobart area, and there were times when she was left alone with the man, who was one of her supervisors.

Crown prosecutor Elizabeth Avery told the jury: “It is alleged that the man engaged in sexual conduct with the girl and this took place in a number of ways.

“The behavior carried out with the girl stems from a relationship where the carer spent more time with her, would give her special attention and allow her to sit on her lap”.

The court heard the man kissed the girl on the lips, touched her tongues in the form of an intimate kiss in the bathroom and asked her to touch her genitals and he touched and kissed hers.

Ms Avery alleged that “there was one occasion” where the man helped the girl to the toilet “even though she didn’t need any help to go to the toilet”.

He told the court the man photographed the girl in the toilet.

The court heard that the girl disclosed the alleged abuse after several conversations with the police and her parents, telling her father that the nursery worker was allowed to see her “bits” and always told her he gave an extra towel when he went to the bathroom.

The four-year-old gave video evidence which was played to the jury in court, where the victim can be heard telling a police officer “he kissed me three times” and “we touched tongues”.

Ms Avery told the jury the man denied sexual conduct.

The trial continues.

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