A Sebastopol man charged with committing an indecent act with a 13-year-old girl has declared his innocence during an impassioned plea to a jury.
The man, 59, appeared at the County Court in Ballarat yesterday where he had already entered a plea of not guilty.
The court heard from several witnesses yesterday, including the alleged victim, her parents and the accused.
The girl’s mother told the court her daughter was staying over at a friend’s home on the night of June 12, 2011.
The mother said her daughter told her the next evening that her friend’s father had woken her up in the morning by touching her between her legs.
She said her daughter grabbed his hand and asked what he was doing, to which he replied: “Good morning”.
Later her father gave evidence, telling the court his daughter seemed “a bit distant”, but otherwise fine on the morning of the alleged incident.
The man explained his daughter had stayed in the accused’s home a number of times before, because she was friends with the accused’s daughter.
The accused told the jury of seven women and five men that he was innocent. “I didn’t do this and I wouldn’t do it,” he said.
The court heard the girl’s evidence, which was heard in-camera, stated the alleged offender said “hello”, rather than “good morning”.
The defence counsel said those sort of “key differences” between the girl’s account and her mother’s re-telling could not be overlooked by the jury.
The trial continues today.