Teen who raped a child in Esperance jailed

A 20-year-old Kambalda man who raped a 12-year-old girl in a suburb of Esperance was jailed for two years and three months.

Cameron Nicholas Graham was sentenced in Kalgoorlie District Court by Judge Mark Herron on May 24, after pleading guilty to sexual penetration of a child under 13 on May 13.

Graham was 19-years-old when he raped the girl, leaving her "ashamed" and causing her to lose sleep and weight.

On the night of December 30, 2018, the two were at an address in a suburb of Esperance.

Graham took the victim by the hand and into a nearby bush where he penetrated her.

The victim reported the rape the next day.

Graham claimed the victim told him she was 14 and he believed she had consented.

Judge Herron said the girl did not look older than 12 and had been traumatised.

"Whether you knew she was aged 12 or believed she was 14, she was a very young girl, much younger than you, and you ought to have shown the responsibility as a young adult not to have had sex with her," he said.

"She was traumatised by what happened. Being subject to an act of sexual penetration on the ground in the bush would have been humiliating for her."

A victim impact statement described the girl as being "bright, bubbly, happy and outgoing" before the rape, but had become "reserved" and "extremely quiet" afterwards.

The victim has had difficulty sleeping and eating and lost a lot of weight.

The victim's mother describes her daughter as now a "completely broken child".

The mother said her daughter hid in a corner and under a pillow when she first saw her mother and felt "ashamed" and blamed herself.

Judge Herron said the maximum penalty for the offence was 20 years in jail.

The judge accepted Graham had limited education, was "sexually inexperienced" and "lacked full awareness" of why his actions were wrong.

He described the offender's crime as "opportunistic and spontaneous" and accepted he was under the influence of both ecstasy and alcohol, which impaired his thinking.

Judge Herron remarked that Graham was a very talented footballer who played for the Kambalda Eagles and wanted to play in the AFL.

The judge read a reference from James Trail, who had worked as a chief executive officer for the Shire of Coolgardie for the last three years.

Mr Trail said his daughters operated the scoreboard at every Kambalda home game and said he enjoyed watching Graham kick a football with his daughters.

"He has always found you to be respectful towards himself, his wife and his daughters. He confirms your remorse for what you did," Judge Herron said.

The judge took into account the offender's early plea of guilty and remorse and that he had no prior criminal record.

Graham was sentenced to two-years-and-three months in jail and was made eligible for parole. His sentence was backdated to May 20, 2019.

He will have to spend 13-and-a-half months in jail from 20 May, before being eligible for parole.