PHILIPSBURG–A 29-year-old man charged with having sexually assaulted his two stepdaughters ages eight and ten years old will have to sit out an eight-year prison sentence, the prosecutor demanded in the Court of First Instance on Wednesday. The court will present its decision in this case on Wednesday, September 7.
The mother of the girls, who was a victim of domestic violence herself, was present at the hearing to file for damages. She demanded US $4,000 for “emotional pain and fear” for herself and $1,400 in damages for each of her two children, as well as $2,600 for psychological therapy for her older daughter, who is traumatised.
The mother told the court that her two daughters are seriously affected by the incidents. Her younger daughter no longer wanted to speak about her stepfather’s misconduct at all.
The two cases came to light in January after the eight-year-old told her grandmother that she had caught her stepfather, who had been in a relationship with her mother for two years, while he was masturbating and watching pornography on the television.
She said that after she had returned from the bathroom, he had blindfolded her with an orange bandana and had pushed his penis in her mouth. Afterwards, he told her it was not necessary to inform her mother about what had happened, because he would explain it to her, because she would definitely be angry.
After the younger girl had told the police what had happened, her elder sister said her stepfather had tried to have sex with her as well. He had massaged her private parts and had pushed her over, telling her he wanted to have intercourse with her, She was 10 years old at the time.
The abuse case came to light after suspect S.G.M. was arrested for the alleged mistreatment of his girlfriend on January 29. He allegedly had pushed and beaten the woman and squeezed her throat during an altercation over the fact that he watched pornography while the children were at home.
M. denied that he had choked his girlfriend and tried to downplay what had happened during the domestic fight. “That happens to everyone,” he told the judge, denying that he had locked the woman out of the house.
M., who has now spent 198 days in preventive custody, also denied the sexual-abuse charges. He claimed that he had not penetrated the mouth of the eight-year-old girl. He said he had given her a piece of candy in an effort to calm her down, as she was upset.
He also denied having committed lewd acts on her elder sister, telling the judge he had massaged and rubbed some medication on parts of the girl’s body, after she had come out of the shower.
He said this had happened twice. He said the girl was “a little uncomfortable”, claiming this was possibly caused by “something” that might have happened in the past with other men.
According to M., the allegations of sexual misconduct were a “misunderstanding”. Asked by the judge if he was a sex addict, because he seems to watch porn a lot, he said he was not. He told the judge he regretted what had happened, but kept denying the sexual assault, “or whatever has happened.”
According to an investigating psychiatrist, M. wanted to satisfy his sexual needs without any regard for the consequences for the girls. The psychiatrist said there was a chance of reoffending and therefore considered therapy warranted. A psychologist found “anti-social personal characteristics.”
The prosecutor said the defendant had violated the trust of the children who were in their “daddy’s” care and that he had mistreated their mother. All of this took place in their own home, “where they should have been safe,” the prosecutor said.
The prosecutor considered damages warranted and called on the court to award $500 in damages to the mother, $1,400 for each of the girls and $2,600 for therapy.
“My client denies all the charges,” attorney-at-law Marlon Hart told the court. According to the lawyer, M. should be acquitted of sexual abuse because it could not be proven with sufficient certainty that sexual intrusion had taken place. “The children may have confused fantasy and reality,” the lawyer said.
Where the mistreatment of the mother was concerned, Hart said that this was a “simple case of mistreatment,” as there was no evidence of strangulation.