Andrew Collyer

Posted: October 22, 2012 by Serendipity in Victoria
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Mitcham Football Club life member guilty on sex count

6 Jun 08 @ 10:01am by Elise Kinsella

A LIFE member of the Mitcham Football Club was last week convicted in the Victorian County Court of one count of indecent assault on a male.

Andrew Collyer was convicted of fondling a 10-year-old boy who was helping him run the scoreboard at the ground in about 1979.

He escaped jail and was instead sentenced to a three-year court order, which places him in the control of the court for that period.

The victim and his father, who can not be named for legal reasons, spoke to the Leader in an effort to raise awareness about child abuse and the effect it has on the victim’s life.

“I was just a boy at the time; I loved going to watch all my heroes play and was always hanging around there,” the victim said.

“He got me up sitting on his knee and he fondled me it was confusing for me at that age because I didn’t understand what had happened and he was supposed to be someone I trusted.”

It took the victim nearly 30 years to talk about the assault and another two years to contact police.

Both he and his father praised the efforts of police for the supportive way they handled the case.

The victim’s father described the process as “absolute hell for the family”.

He said: “You feel like you haven’t been able to protect your own child even though you know it’s not your fault.”

The stress of the criminal process meant the victim had to drop back to part-time work and was on anti-depressant medication for two years.

But both say their faith in the justice system has been vindicated.

“We feel like the community has now judged what happened and said that he (Collyer) was responsible and what he did was wrong,” the victim’s father said.

Collyer had agreed to stay away from the club during the trial and the club’s committee plans to discuss what will happen now that he has been convicted.

The victim and his father urged victims of sexual assault to talk to family, friends or support groups. Eastern Centre Against Sexual Assault Crisis Centre can be contacted on 1800 806 292 or business hours on 9870 7330.


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