Dementia patient sexually assaulted at Qld nursing home

ON THE same day an elderly Hervey Bay man visited his late wife's remains at a crematorium, he sexually assaulted a woman with dementia at a nursing home.

The victim does not remember being molested due to her illness, a court has heard.

Former coal miner Stanley James Shaw, who is blind in one eye and has a range of health issues himself, had never been in trouble with the law before.

But at age 92, he stood in front of a magistrate this week on the serious charge of sexual assault.

He pleaded guilty in Maryborough Magistrates Court to the incident that happened at a Maryborough nursing home on January 1.

The assault date marked 10 years since Shaw's wife died.

The court heard Shaw had attended the centre on the day specifically for the purpose of visiting the victim.

After being left alone in her room, he assaulted her.

Police prosecutor Kathryn Stagoll said an employee walking past the room saw Shaw rubbing the victim's genital area "quite hard" and then putting a hand inside her shirt.

The elderly woman was seated when she was being molested.

Later, she had to be informed about what had happened to her. Shaw's defence lawyer said her client did not recall the event but "accepts the facts".

"He's deeply remorseful and embarrassed to be in this situation," she said.

"(The victim) was well known to the couple."

Deeming Shaw unlikely to commit another crime, Magistrate Terry Duroux decided to keep the elderly offender out of jail.

"You've had a blameless life, up until now," Mr Duroux said.

"A custodial order is appropriate today."

Shaw was given a five-month jail sentence, wholly suspended with an operational period of 18 months.

A conviction was recorded.