COURT: Victim sexually assaulted in her own bed
DISTRAUGHT after a fight with his girlfriend, Ricky Jack Attenborough sent a series of text messages to a woman he knew, sharing his distress.
Concerned for his wellbeing, she invited him to stay over so he wouldn't be alone.
She couldn't have known he would betray her kindness in a terrible way.
Yesterday Attenborough, 22, appeared before Maryborough District Court and pleaded guilty to one count of sexual assault.
The court heard the victim went to bed after telling Attenborough, who was heavily intoxicated, he could stay over.
About half an hour later, she awoke to find him in bed beside her with his hand down her pants, touching her vagina.
The court heard at first Attenborough treated the victim like she was being unreasonable when she reacted to the assault.
He later lied to police about the circumstances under which he had been in the house, the court was told.
But defence barrister Paul Rutledge said his client was genuinely remorseful for what he had done.
Mr Rutledge said Attenborough wanted the complainant to know he apologised.
He said his client had left school in Year 10 as he was struggling within the education system.
Diagnosed with attention deficit disorder, Attenborough was prescribed Ritalin to treat the condition.
But he found it made him angry and he decided to stop taking it.
After leaving school he found employment at McDonald's.
He currently worked part time at Woolworths but was hoping to work full time in the near future, Mr Rutledge said.
He said Attenborough, who had no prior criminal convictions, had been anxious about the court case and didn't sleep well.
Judge Brad Farr said the victim had been in her own room and had the tight to feel safe.
"That's a place everyone is entitled to feel safe and secure," he said.
"This constitutes a gross breach of trust."
Attenborough was sentenced to nine months in prison, wholly suspended, with an operational period of two years.