Horror home attack victim's plea for 'justice'
WHEN Janice Keys saw a photo of her attacker's face, she ripped her son's phone from his hands and threw it across the room.
But it was The Morning Bulletin's article on the 20-year-old man's serious assault sentence in the Rockhampton Magistrates Court on Friday, January 20 that shook the 67-year-old to the core.
Fifteen months probation with regular drug testing, 100 hours community service and no conviction felt too low a price to pay for the lifelong hurt she will suffer after the man, under the influence of LSD, entered her West Rockhampton home.
The court heard the man seriously assaulted Mrs Keys when he pushed her in the face and stood on her left ankle.
Her husband Peter, who has Alzheimer's, her daughter-in-law and five-year-old grandson were in the house.
In the days to follow the November attack, Mrs Keys was left bruised and frightened. More than a month on the hurt has not subsided and and she is undergoing counselling to deal with her trauma.
Now, Mrs Key seeks an audience with the Department of Justice Attorney General Yvette D'Ath to plead her case: the justice system needs to be more harsh on perpetrators.
Mrs Keys' campaign coincides with Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk's arrival in Rockhampton today to convene Cabinet, and promote a range of government initiatives for regional Queensland throughout the week.
She hopes the Premier will hear her message, and that her experience could effect change.
"People in the public need to see the whole picture, not just of my incident but the justice system," she said. "I want to see harsher penalties.
"It is a joke, there's not much we can do about that now, you can't revoke it," she said of her attacker's sentence.
"The justice system isn't nice, as we all know it is not fair sometimes for victims.
"It's a joke, he assaulted me, he busted out of the car of the police."
Mrs Keys said the fact her attacker had no conviction for his first offence felt like a "slap on the wrist" and this element needed to be reviewed.
"I don't feel safe, Peter doesn't feel safe, my daughter-in-law won't even stay here," she said.
"At 20 you can say 'no, I don't want to take drugs' or whatever. "His mind was his own, and I don't care what anyone says, when he entered our house."