Man, 40, pleads guilty to assaulting girls at Ballina shops

A Coast pensioner has been refused bail after being charged with drug trafficking.
A Coast pensioner has been refused bail after being charged with drug trafficking. Rockhampton Morning Bulletin

A MAN who police allege indecently assaulted two girls in shops at Ballina in November has pleaded guilty.

The 40-year-old man's name cannot be published because the court issued a non-publication order on Monday.

Yesterday he appeared in Lismore Local Court to answer three charges of indecent assault of a person under 16. After previously pleading not guilty, the man entered a guilty plea.

Police facts tendered to court stated the man approached a six-year-old girl and her four-year-old brother in the toy section of Big W at Ballina on November 13 between 3.30 and 4.11pm.

It is alleged the man put his hand inside the girl's shorts and underpants and touched her, the girl then ran to her mother crying.

The following day police allege the man approached a 13-year-old girl who was with her 12-year-old brother and eight-year-old sister in the movie section of Kmart between 4.08 and 4.42pm.

It is alleged the man approached the 13-year-old and touched her backside with his hand outside her clothing.

After receiving reports about the incidents and viewing CCTV footage, police arrested the man on November 15, as he was entering Big W at Ballina.

When police searched the man's vehicle they allegedly found the T-shirt and shorts he was wearing when captured on CCTV.

On Monday at Lismore Local Court Magistrate David Heilpern requested a focused pre-sentence report and a psychological report be prepared on the man.

He also ordered that the man must not go to Ballina unless attending court or legal appointments.

The man's conditional bail was continued and he will be sentenced in Lismore Local Court in December.

Topics:  ballina crime sexual assault

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