A minor has told a judge and jury that it took several years before she was able to tell someone that she had been indecently assaulted by a male neighbour.
The girl, now in her teens, was “seven or eight” years old at the time of the alleged incident. St Lucy resident Walter Vernon Boucher is accused of committing the act sometime between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2016.
The 69-year-old accused is now on trial before a nine-member jury, presided over by Justice Randall Worrell.
When the child took the witness stand she told the No. 2 Supreme Court that she and her brother were in the habit of going over to Boucher’s house as his wife used to babysit them.
She explained that she and her cousin would normally go in the yard with Boucher because he kept animals and plants in which they were “interested”.
But at the time of the incident her cousin chose to go out front and she was about to follow.
“When I got up he grabbed my pants tab and pulled me back. After he pulled me he started to take his hand and push it down under my private area.”
She explained that she did not tell police all that had happened but Boucher then took her to a shed which was also located in the yard and put her to sit on his lap and “kiss me on the lips”. However her brother walked in and Boucher told her “not to tell anyone because I would die”.
The girl told the jury that the incident “scared” her and she did not tell anyone about it “until a few years after. I told my school teacher at school”.
Today that teacher took to the stand and gave evidence. She disclosed she noticed that something was wrong with the child because “she was distant and not her normal happy self”. The educator disclosed that some students also spoke to her about the complainant and she took the matter to the principal and the child’s mother was called in. She then accompanied them to the Psychiatric Hospital as some of the child’s answers were not forthcoming despite her attempts. The matter was also reported to the police.
The child’s mother and officers who investigated the matter have also given evidence in the case which is being prosecuted by Senior Crown Counsel Olivia Davis who closed the case for the prosecution today.
Attorney-at-law Arthur Holder and his team are Boucher’s defence counsel and they will put their case to the jury when the matter continues tomorrow before Justice Worrell.