Clinical opinions given at assault trial

By DARRYN NUFER

IT was clinically appropriate for an ambulance officer to touch a patient's chest and groin area during the course of their duties, a District Court trial in Rockhampton has heard.

Paramedic Gavin James Lewington is on trial after pleading not guilty to two counts of indecent treatment of a child under 16.

It is alleged the incidents happened while the then 15-year-old girl was being taken to Rockhampton Hospital in an ambulance on January 21 last year.

It is alleged Lewington lifted up the girl's top and touched her breasts.

It is further alleged he put his hand down her pants and rubbed her genitals.

Under cross-examination by defence barrister Gerard O'Driscoll on Monday afternoon, the girl's doctor, Geoffrey Wallace, said it would be clinically appropriate to attach cardiac monitor "dots'' about the chest or breast area.

He also said to take a femoral pulse it would be necessary to have your hand in the groin area.

The court also heard from paediatric doctor Hilary Mercer, who was present at the hospital on the night of the alleged incidents.

Mr O'Driscoll asked for Dr Mercer's opinion on Dr Wallace's evidence that the girl would not have been able to differentiate between a clinical and sexual touch to the vaginal area.

"All I can comment is the state that I saw her and in those first 10 minutes that I saw her I don't think she would be capable of that,'' Dr Mercer said.

Yesterday the court heard from witnesses including Lewington's paramedic colleague, Kenneth William Rudge.

The trial continues.



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