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Boy jailed for seven years over sexual attack on 88-year-old woman

A teenage boy who attempted to sexually assault a great-grandmother in her own home has been described as a "coward'' by a West Australian judge.
The 15-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was sentenced in the Perth Children's Court today to seven years detention for robbing, bashing and trying to rape the elderly woman.
Armed with a knife, the boy burgled her Great Southern farm house in April this year and attacked the 88-year-old woman, not realising she had triggered her Silver Chain alarm.
Her grandson and his wife, who lived 500m away, found the boy in the midst of the attack, the court heard.
The great-grandmother suffered bruises all over her body after the boy repeatedly punched and kicked her, and threw objects at her, including a ceramic pot at her head.
In a victim impact statement, the woman said her head was "exploding'' and she thought she was going to die.
"He was just kicking me and kicking me,'' she said.
The woman also described suffering nightmares, lacking self-confidence, feeling like a burden on her family and being physically weak and confused after the attack.
Court president Denis Reynolds said it was unlikely that the woman would be able to return to her home of 60 years or live independently again.
The judge said the ordeal was extremely humiliating and degrading for the "extremely vulnerable'' woman.
"The community would be rightly disgusted and revolted by what you did,'' he said.
Judge Reynolds said the boy's behaviour was "cowardly, violent and persistent''.
Although he accepted the youth was remorseful, there was room for more remorse, the judge said.
Judge Reynolds also dismissed as "nonsense'' the boy's claim that he was drunk because a test returned a zero alcohol reading.
The teenager was convicted of aggravated burglary, unlawful assault occasioning bodily harm and two counts of attempted sexual penetration without consent.
He was also convicted of another aggravated burglary and sentenced to six months to be served concurrently with the seven-year sentence.
As the boy was led away in tears, he called out to his family who said they would seek an appeal.
Outside court, the teenager's grandfather told reporters the youth was remorseful.
"He's very sorry,'' he said. "He regrets everything he's done.''
The grandfather said both families were suffering.
"We do feel very, very sorry and hurt for the victim's family and we just hope that our family can just hold our heads up and just carry on,'' he said.

www.perthnow.com.au (27-8-2013)


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