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Assault penalty for five-hour attack disgusts victim's mum

Rockhampton woman Tracey Loweke is disappointed with the sentences given to the people who abused her daughter for five hours. Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin
Rockhampton woman Tracey Loweke is disappointed with the sentences given to the people who abused her daughter for five hours. Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin Allan Reinikka

TRACEY Loweke promised her daughter justice.

But as the instigator of a vicious attack on her daughter walked free from court on Wednesday, she felt as though she had failed.

"The justice system has done nothing," she said.

"It's disgusting. I feel helpless."

Tracey's 17-year-old daughter Michaela was verbally and physically abused, tormented and humiliated over a five-hour period at a Rockhampton residence in May last year.

Emma Kate Williams, 21, pleaded guilty in the Rockhampton District Court last week to assault occasioning bodily harm in company and deprivation of liberty.

After six days in custody, Williams was yesterday sentenced to 12 months jail with immediate parole and ordered to pay $500 compensation.

The court heard she had no criminal history.

Judge Paul Smith said he took this into account.

He also had regard to the fact her seven co-offenders, some of them children, all received non-custodial punishments ranging from fines to probation.

He said it would have been preferable for all matters to be heard together.

Tracey said her daughter was "heartbroken and terrified".

"To be honest I can't take her in public," Tracey said.

"She used to be the life of the party."

Tracey called for harsher penalties for young offenders who commit serious crimes.

"I'm so sick of seeing these sorts of things happen in our town," she said.

"These kids do the most horrific things and then get let off."

Tracey said she believed there should only be one punishment for these types of crimes - jail time.

"I'm not going to say my daughter is an angel but she never deserved this, no child does."

IN COURT

Who: Emma Kate Williams

Charges: Assault occasioning bodily harm and deprivation of liberty

Punishment: 12 months jail with immediate parole

Topics:  assault, editors picks, juveniles, rockhampton district court



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