Dominion Post story 28th February 2014
A Napier man who sexually offended against two young girls can be named after one victim and the parents of another told a judge they waived their rights for protection in order to have name suppression lifted. Victim impact statements were read by a woman who was indecently assaulted by Adam Johnson in the late 1990s when she was aged 5 or 6, and by the parents of a 6-year-old girl who Johnson sexually violated in January last year. Johnson, 31, was found guilty of indecent assault by a jury and he pleaded guilty to the other charge.
In the Napier District Court yesterday, the parents of the second victim said they had treated Johnson as family and trusted him. Their daughter had suffered greatly, the family felt betrayed and they spent nearly all their savings dealing with the court process. The other victim said she had lived with the effects of the offending for 18 years at a great cost and told Johnson: "You knew exactly what you were doing." She said Johnson told others she had lied about her claims and that Johnson's friends and supporters used social media, including Facebook, to discredit her. She had left New Zealand because of this.
Crown prosecutor Jo Rielly said Johnson had recently given his victims letters of apology, but these were very late "and could be seen as having an element of self- pity". Johnson's lawyer Russell Fairbrother, QC, said it was regrettable Johnson's admission of guilt came so late "but it's remarkable they came at all". He said denial was the means by which Johnson dealt with issues, and asked Judge Jonathan Down to consider a sentence of home detention. Judge Down said the victim impact statements made it clear the effects of Johnson's offending had been "broad, deep and long- lasting". A sentence of home detention was insufficient as a strong message of deterrence was needed. He sentenced Johnson to five years' jail.
Date of Birth
Sexual violation of a girl aged 6 in January 2013 and indecent assault of a girl aged 5-6 in 1996-97
Sentenced to 5 years in February 2014
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OFFENCES / CONVICTIONS
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