Child rape jail sentence 'grossly inadequate'
A CHILD protection advocate is urging the Attorney-General to appeal the four-month prison term handed down to a Hervey Bay man who admitted to raping his nine-year-old stepdaughter, saying the sentence was "grossly inadequate."
Bravehearts criminologist Carol Ronken said the organisation would be sending a letter to Attorney-General Yvette D'Ath's office because she believed the courts were clearly out of line.
A spokeswoman for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions said the case would be reviewed.
"The ODPP is reviewing the matter and considering the prospects for an appeal against the sentence," the spokeswoman said.
More than 40,000 people across social media have shared the story, with many outraged over the sentence the man received.
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The 35-year-old admitted to digitally raping his stepdaughter four years ago while on an overnight trip at Mt Tambourine.
The sentence was handed down in Brisbane District Court last week.
"It's definitely the responsibility of the Attorney-General to appeal this case," Ms Ronken said.
"We will be putting a letter to her, letting her know we've seen the reports on the case and are requesting for appeal."
She said the message judges gave to victims when they handed down such "grossly inadequate sentences" was that what had happened to them was not considered serious.
"Unfortunately, we regularly hear offenders being given sentences that are clearly not in line with community expectations. Four months is inadequate and does not give justice for the victim.
"It also fails to send a message that the sexual assault of children will not be tolerated," Ms Ronken said.
"This child has been given a life sentence, a little girl who has had her childhood and her innocence violently stolen from her."
After the Fighters against Child Abuse Australia Facebook page shared news coverage of the case, the post was shared 31,694 times and more than 1200 people left comments pushing for a longer or more serious punishment.
From the Chronicle's page alone, more than 8500 people shared the story on Facebook, some describing the sentencing as "a farce" and "a tragedy".