An ACT Supreme Court judge has described the “appalling” actions of a man who broke into an Australian National University student residence and touched a woman’s breasts while she slept.
Paul David Kelly, aged 39, has been sentenced to five years and nine months’ imprisonment over 17 convictions, ranging from committing an act of indecency to theft and burglary.
Kelly went on a three-day crime spree in September last year, stealing a car, breaking into buildings and robbing a second residence at the university.
The victim told the court she had woken to find him in her room touching her, looking down at her through eye slits in a dark balaclava.
She said: “Who are you? What are you doing?”
Kelly replied: “You don’t know me.”
He then tried to steal her laptop, but she grabbed it back from him. The woman said she began yelling at him to leave.
When he let go of the laptop, he went to the door and threatened her as he left.
“I will rape you. I will come back and get you,” he told her.
After he had gone, the woman discovered her car keys and wallet had been stolen, along with a phone.
Kelly tried to use her bank card at a local shop to buy an iced coffee and three chocolate bars but was forced to abandon them at the checkout because the victim had asked the bank to suspend the card.
Police finally caught up with him in a car he had stolen before the incident.
The woman’s keys and cards were on the console, along with a small sealed bag containing the drug methylamphetamine, often called ice.
The court heard Kelly had little recollection of the events and had an ongoing issue with drugs.
He also has a previous conviction for an act of indecency. The victim told the court she left her job and deferred her study after the incident.
Justice Chrissa Loukas-Karlsson said the act of indecency was by far the most serious of Kelly’s crimes.
She said she accepted that Kelly was remorseful but was guarded about his prospects for rehabilitation. She addressed Kelly directly, telling him the offences were profoundly serious.
“What you did to that young woman was appalling,” the judge said. It’s not the first time you have committed an act of indecency or burglary. Drugs are not an excuse, and you know that. You will have a lot more time in jail to reflect on what you have done. Use that time.”
Kelly will not be eligible for parole until 2023.