Patrick James Anderson

Posted: October 9, 2012 by Serendipity in NSW
Tags: , , ,,22049,25578390-5001021,00.html

DOCS bungle led to teen being cared for by sex offender

By Gemma Jones, Political Reporter

June 03, 2009 12:00am

A TEENAGER was sexually abused after the Department of Community Services placed him with an offender without bothering to wait for a police check.

Mark Robinson has spoken out to reveal the sexual abuse he suffered at the hands of Patrick James Anderson, 45, who was his carer for a month before the check came back and revealed his dark past.

Anderson was convicted in Port Macquarie Local Court in March of aggravated indecency with a victim under his authority and committing an act of indecency with a person 16 or over, charges relating to Mr Robinson. DOCS was told of the problem in June 2007 but police were only alerted the following year.

In May 2007, DOCS contracted a private company, Life Without Barriers, to care for him in a house at Port Macquarie.

Now 18, Mr Robinson yesterday said DOCS had been totally negligent, with Anderson’s abuse robbing him of trust in men and capping off a horror upbringing.

He was taken into DOCS’ care when he was four following the death of his mother. His father is incapacitated in a nursing home.

Following the sexual abuse in care, which included being pinched on the bottom and his carer exposing his genitals to him, Mr Robinson said he became homeless and has lost all dreams for his future.

“I don’t like other men any more, that is for sure. Then I was homeless and living on the street for a year. When I moved into (the house with Anderson) I didn’t have a drug and alcohol problem and now I do,” Mr Robinson said yesterday.

After leaving Anderson’s house, he lived in his car and mowed lawns before a Port Macquarie woman offered him a room.

Life Without Barriers admitted yesterday they had a staff shortage and put Anderson to work before his police check returned a red flag four weeks into his employment.

Police only found out about the sexual abuse in 2008.

A Life Without Barriers spokeswoman declined to reveal the contents of Anderson’s police check, citing privacy laws.

DOCS was yesterday attempting to distance itself from Mr Robinson’s case but Life Without Barriers confirmed it had been contracted by the department to provide the boy’s care.

A DOCS spokeswoman explained the stunning lapse by blaming Life Without Barriers, saying it was up to private companies to seek police checks on their workers.

DOCS later conceded it should have done more to help. “At the time the report was made, DOCS focused on supporting the young person,” the spokeswoman said.

“This should have included assisting him to make a report to the police. Regrettably this did not happen until some time later.”


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  1. sarah lehane says:

    holy bejesus, when will docs facs or whatever name they use, just do things properly, so ugh suffering.

  2. Ivan. says:

    Its distressful and disgraceful to say the least.

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