NT sex crimes Q&A: The questions you don’t want to ask and the answers you don’t want to read

by | Feb 18, 2022 | Uncategorised | 0 comments

WARNING: This questionnaire includes confronting information that you may not want to know, but should be aware of, concerning how the NT Police executive and its media unit are failing Territorians when it comes to the reporting of serious sexual assaults.

Last week, the NT Independent revealed NT Police did not issue a public warning about a naked man who several women said had either approached or chased them in the Marlow Lagoon dog park since mid-December. The NT Independent spoke to five women who said they had encountered the man since December 18.

We’ve compiled a list of some of the most shocking unreported sexual assaults over the last 12 months to show you how you’re being kept in the dark about what happens in your community by the government and police executive.

Complete this questionnaire if you aren’t afraid to know some of the shocking details.

INCIDENT: On March 11, 2021 a boy was sexually assaulted when playing in his family’s fenced-in yard when a man approached the toddler and drew him close to the fence before the man exposed his penis and forced it into the toddler’s mouth. The NT Police had not made a report to the public despite the disturbing incident having occurred three days earlier.

Q: How old was the boy?

A: Three

INCIDENT: On February 22, 2021 An Alice Springs woman woke in her bed to find a teenager with his fingers in her anus during a break-in and robbery. The NT Independent reported that the alleged offender was a 15-year-old boy and was arrested and charged.

Q; Did NT Police bail the youth offender at the time of being charged?

A: It is still unknown. NT Police refused to answer the NT Independent’s questions. No other media asked the questions or reported on it.

INCIDENT: Three male teenagers who were out on bail allegedly attempted to rape a woman at Pinelands last January.

Q: How did NT Police describe the assault in a media release?

A: “Aggravated assault”. The media release also said police had arrested a 13-year-old, a 14-year-old and a 15-year-old for the “aggravated assault” on a 23-year-old woman. But the release did not mention charges or the sexual nature of the crime.

INCIDENT: The NT News published an eye witness account of an alleged attack in Nakara on February 17, 2021 that occurred the day before. It was described as an alleged rape of a woman while another man watched, and as the woman screamed for help. The NT Police never referred to the event as a “sexual assault” or “rape” in multiple media releases, instead referring to the event as an “alleged assault” and “aggravated assault” all while the alleged offender was on the run.

Q; How long was the alleged offender on the run before being apprehended?

A: 16 days. A 26-year-old man was finally arrested over the alleged “aggravated assault” on February 16, 2021. Police did not make the public aware the offender had allegedly committed sexual assault for the time he was on the run.

INCIDENT: In March last year, a sex offender caught outside a little girl’s bedroom with a “rape kit” was arrested by police who retrieved video from his phone that showed he had been in the girl’s room on several occasions to sexually assault her – including one night when he hid behind the bedroom door while the child’s father had checked on her. The alleged offender was a registered sex offender from Queensland. NT Police did not disclose anything to the public.

Q: On how many occasions did the offender attend the girls bedroom?

A: Three. He was apprehended on the fourth occasion in the vicinity of the house after the mother observed a man outside the window and scared him off while calling the police.

INCIDENT: On March 25. 2020,  Sex crime detectives apprehended two boys in connection to alleged indecent assaults of two women in Casuarina two days earlier.

Q: One of the offenders was not able to be charged. Why?

A:  He was nine years old and under the age of criminal responsibility that is currently 10 years of age.

INCIDENT: A 48-year-old man was arrested after allegedly touching a girl “inappropriately” while she sat in a car with her infant siblings outside a takeaway shop in Casuarina last year.

Q: How old was the alleged victim?

A: Eight.

INCIDENT: A boy was allegedly raped by a man in a remote community early on May 15, 2021, while a source said the boy was between eight and 12-years old.

Q: When did Police media release a statement?

A: Following questions being sent by the NT Independent that they did not respond to.

Fact: Last February, Territorian Ben Kitson started a petition threatening legal action against the Gunner Government for its perceived failure to publicly act on escalating crime. The petition criticised the government for “placing the rights of criminals before that of victims” and threatened a class action lawsuit against the government to “seek compensation for the financial and psychological trauma that we’ve had to endure”.

Q: How many people in one week from across the Northern Territory signed the petition threatening legal action against the Gunner Government for its perceived failure to publicly act on escalating crime?

A: 8400 (according to the organiser)

Fact : On Sept 9, 2021 Police revealed a “man” allegedly assaulted a young girl in her bedroom in Woodroffe while she slept in the early hours of the morning and had been arrested.

Q: Why did NT Police state the alleged offender was a man when he was identified by sources as a youth who was known to NT Police?

A: We don’t know.

INCIDENT: In December, the NT Independent revealed that less than six per cent of alleged sexual assault offences in the NT recorded over 22 months until October were publicly reported by the NT Police, according to an analysis that compared crime statistics to police media statements, including three months where no sex crimes were made public by police at all.

Q: How many sexual assaults and related offences were recorded in the period, but not reported, according to the Department of Attorney-General and Justice?

A: 862

Q: Of the 46 sexual assaults reported to the public by the NT Police, how many occurred outside the Darwin and rural area?

A: 18. This represents two per cent of the total sexual assaults recorded in the period according to the Department.

INCIDENT: The NT Independent has consistently asked questions of the NT Police over the past two years, about a wide-range of serious crimes, including many relating to public safety.

Q: How many times has the NT Police’s media unit answered the NT Independent?

A: Zero

INCIDENT: Police commissioner Jamie Chalker confirmed last year that the NT Police have launched an official investigation into the NT Independent after our reporting exposed serious failures and flaws on behalf of the top brass to protect and inform the public.

Q: How many NT Independent sources have been exposed?

A: None

Q: Who did Police media manager Rob Cross work for as media adviser prior to taking his role with NT Police?

A: Health Minister Natasha Fyles, when she was Attorney General in 2019, before assuming the role of director of communications for the NT Police.

If you’ve read this far, you need to read this: https://ntindependent.com.au/nt-police-still-dont-get-why-reporting-sex-crimes-is-in-the-public-interest/

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