Former premier’s son jailed for 11 child sex offences
Former premier Peter Dowding has described his son’s jailing for child sex offences in the State’s north as a “great tragedy on all sides”.
Kimberley Dean Dowding, 42, has been sentenced to more than three years behind bars after pleading guilty to 11 counts of sexually abusing two girls in Roebourne who were between the ages of 13 and 15 at the time of the offences.
The crimes took place between October, 2015, and November last year and involved cash being paid for sexual favours.
District Court Judge Michael Gething heard evidence of a police investigation into similar cases of sexual exploitation in Roebourne, which had resulted in about 30 men being charged.
“There are people who emerge from that particular type of environment, for whom this sort of conduct has become entrenched,” Dowding’s lawyer Jim Sutherland said.
The former premier sent a letter to the court about his son’s case and the wider issues confronting Roebourne.
“I would ask this court to take into account the very unusual circumstances of these charges,” the letter read.
“In particular, there are some 30 or more men with whom this and other young girls have been sexually active, as a result of which, a significant proportion of the Roebourne community is facing similar charges.”
The court was told Mr Dowding’s son approached the girls outside his Roebourne home and offered cash and cigarettes.
Both girls declined, but one later returned and engaged in oral sex with Dowding for money, an arrangement which the court was told occurred five more times.
At times, the girl would seek out Dowding for a sex-for-money transaction.
He will be eligible for parole in June, 2019.