A FORMER police liaison officer and teacher repeatedly violated a 12-year-old girl in her bed.
A FORMER police liaison officer and teacher repeatedly violated a 12-year-old girl in her bed. melnichuk_ira

Gympie child sex offender out of jail after just five months

A FORMER police liaison officer and teacher who repeatedly violated a 12-year-old girl in her bed as she lay frozen in fear sobbed as he was given no further jail time when he was sentenced in Gympie District Court yesterday.

The court heard Sam James Chambers, 48, had entered his victim's bedroom at a Southside property in the early hours of September 8 last year after a day mostly spent drinking, waking her by opening the door. He stood and stared at her, before sitting down on the edge of her bed and touching her over the top of her clothing.

Chambers then took his pants off and got into bed with her, rubbing against her - again on the outside of her clothing - for "about five minutes".

The terrified victim tried to move when Chambers briefly stopped, but he resumed the activity and she lay still until he fell asleep, the court heard.

The victim heard someone moving in the kitchen and rushed out of her bedroom, "crying and traumatised", to tell them there was a man in her bed. The person observed Chambers sleeping in the victim's bed but waited until morning to confront him.

Chambers initially denied doing anything to the victim, and left the property in a taxi before being arrested and placed in custody later that day.

He was released from jail on bail on February 19 this year after serving 165 days in pre-sentence custody, which Judge Suzanne Sheridan noted in sentencing him.

Chambers, who the court heard also previously worked in aged care in Cherbourg, pleaded guilty to two counts of indecent treatment of a child under 16 years, an offence carrying a maximum sentence of 14 years' jail.

Judge Sheridan ruled the time he had spent in custody as sufficient in releasing him on a 15-month head sentence suspended for two years.

She cited Chambers' issues with alcohol abuse, depression and anxiety, noting his extreme intoxication on the night of the offending and accepting his "genuine remorse" in the aftermath.