‘Pure terror’: Prowler’s sexual assault on sleeping girl
In what is every parents worst nightmare a young girl asleep in bed was sexually assaulted by a man who crept into a Brisbane home in the dead of night.
In what even his lawyer labelled the "stuff of nightmares", predator Christopher Jarvis , 32, broke into the Holland Park home in February while the family slept.
After helping himself to a laptop and phone, Jarvis made his way into a room shared by 14-year-old twin girls who were in bed.
What happened next has altered their lives forever with the family forced to move to escape an ongoing psychological nightmare.
Inside the room Jarvis sat on the edge of the bed and began to rub the girl's groin area before attempting to pull her bike shorts across.
The victim's twin confronted Jarvis who fled.
Crown prosecutor Bronwyn Currie today told the Brisbane Magistrates Court that the girls got up and "continued to scream".
In a victim impact statement the girl's mother said the moment was seared into her memory.
"It still brings me to tears … the absolute pure terror in their eyes as we tried to make sense of what they were screaming is something that I have not been able to get out of my head," she told the court.
"It is difficult to describe just how much has been taken from my daughter and us as a family unit."
Jarvis, who had only been out of jail for a few weeks at the time , appeared in court via video link.
He pleaded guilty to indecent treatment of children under 16, burglary and a raft of unrelated charges including a serious assault on a prison guard who he head butted.
In their victim statements both parents said the life they enjoyed just a week earlier when the girls celebrated their 14th birthdays was now unrecognisable.
They now had to announce themselves as they walked around the house so as not to trigger their daughter. The court heard she asks her brother to sit outside the bathroom when she uses it and spirals into sheer panic at innocuous things.
Both girls slept in their parents' room for months after the assault.
Despite the immense financial pain it caused the family, this month they moved out of the house to put "seven months of trauma, anger, stress, fear and anxiety behind us"
"I want my girls to feel proud of the way they composed themselves, strong and independent but .. I see it drain their sense of safety," the father said.
Jarvis' barrister Mitch Rawlings said it was "extraordinarily serious"' offending but was momentary and opportunist.
"The defendant left the house apologizing profusely," he said.
He said Jarvis' criminal history, which only contained minor property crime until now, occurred against a background of substance abuse.
Jarvis, who repeatedly interrupted Magistrate Sheryl Cornack, claimed he had no memory of the sexual assault because he was highly intoxicated.
Ms Cornack said the crimes would have "long standing and profound impacts on the whole family".
She sentenced him to three years and three months jail with a parole eligibility date of February .*For 24-hour sexual violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.
Originally published as 'Pure terror': Brisbane prowler's sexual assault on sleeping girl