UNNAMED DAD. Perhaps they should have left the shrink's testimony out of it....
Court of Appeal orders new trial for father jailed for nine years for raping his son
by: Mark Oberhardt From: The Courier-Mail November 23, 2011 12:51PM
A FATHER jailed for nine years for raping his son claimed evidence of his violence towards his entire family should not have been used in his trial.
The Court of Appeal upheld the man's appeal and ordered a new trial, but did not on the domestic violence evidence being allowed to go to the jury.
Instead the Court of Appeal upheld the appeal on two other grounds and found the domestic violence issue could be argued at the new trial.
Earlier this year, a District Court jury found the man guilty of two counts of indecently treating a child under 12 and one count of rape.
He was sentenced to nine years jail.
The trial heard the complainant was the man's son, the third of five children and the offences were alleged to have occurred between July 1996 and February 2002 in the family’s home at Alexandra Hills, on Brisbane south east outskirts.
The boy was aged between five and eight at the time.
The man appealed on three grounds, the first being that evidence of domestic violence by him on the boy, the boy's mother and siblings should have been excluded because its prejudicial effect outweighed its probative value.
He also claimed there was a miscarriage of justice as a result of inadmissible and prejudicial opinion evidence given by a psychiatrist and the judge failed to direct the jury properly as to the use the psychiatrist's evidence.
The court heard the physchiatrist treated the boy for anorexia nervosa in 2007 and also diagnosed him as suffering from obsessive compulsive disorder.
At the trial the psychiatrist also gave evidence that the boy had kept a diary of "real events".
On appeal the man's lawyers argued the psychiatrist's endorsement of the complainant’s reliability was inadmissible and prejudiced his case.
The Court of Appeal, in an unanimous judgment, upheld the appeal and ordered a new trial.
On the ground of domestic violence alleged against the man Justice Richard Chesterman said it did not appear to be a case in which the man's violence towards his family had any real relevance to, or connection with, the charges.
But he said the matter of its admissibility could be re-argued, if thought appropriate, at the next trial.