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Father, 39, jailed for raping 12-year-old daughter blames act on stress caused by quitting smoking

A "LOVING, caring and generous father" tried to blame the stress caused by his struggle to quit smoking as the reason he raped of his 12-year-old daughter, a court has been told.
The Brisbane District Court was told the 39-year-old father admitted he may have "crossed the line" when he sexually abused his eldest child after she sought a quick cuddle before heading off to bed on January 15.
The court was told news of the attack was only revealed when the girl confided in her mother during a birthday celebration.
Prosecutor Shauna Rankin said the father, when questioned by the mother, tried to claim his attempts to give up smoking had left him feeling "woolly'' in the head, but admitted he might have overstepped the mark when he molested his daughter.
Solicitor Tim Meehan, for the dad, said his client's "30-seconds of madness'' was a "one-off, one instance offence" and unlikely to ever be repeated.
"(My client is) a loving, caring and generous father," Mr Meehan said.
The father, from Brisbane's northside, was today jailed for 2 1/2 years, suspended once he has served 10 months in jail, after pleading guilty to one count of rape.
Judge Grant Britton, SC, was told the father, who cannot be named to protect his daughter's identity, had been held in custody since January 30.
The sentence imposed means the dad will be released from jail in November.
Ms Rankin said the rape consisted of the man using his thumb to rape his daughter.
She said the rape occurred when the 12-year-old went to her parent's bedroom seeking a cuddle before she went to bed.
Mr Meehan said his client apologised to his daughter after his wife was made aware of the sexual assault.
"No doubt this type of offending is always tragic," Mr Meehan said.
"It's a tragedy for her (the daughter) ... and my client through the 30-seconds of madness that led to this charge."
Mr Rankin said the dad told police he was stressed at the time of the offence.
"(He told police that) at the time he wasn't thinking straight because he was struggling to give up smoking," Ms Rankin said.
Judge Britton, in sentencing the dad, said: "For some reason you ... penetrated her with your thumb."
"You admitted you may have crossed the line ... (but) didn't think it had gone that far.
"(However,) you betrayed the trust of your own child in the family home."

Courier Mail (2-8-2012)
Tony Keim

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