Cairns man accused of indecently assaulting Launceston woman

A man accused of sexually assaulting a woman while she was passed out drunk at a Launceston hotel says he was “just trying to wake her up”.

The 39-year-old man from Cairns fronted the Launceston Magistrates Court on Monday charged with indecent assault. 

The court heard the alleged victim met the man during a girls’ night out in Launceston in April this year and ended up back at his hotel.

Throughout the night the woman and her friends, who were all in their early 20s, had been drinking at a number of bars including Irish Murphy’s where she met her accused attacker in the smoking section.

It was at the end of the night when they continued drinking at the hotel that the alleged incident took place. The man is accused of touching the woman on her thighs, hip and butt while she was asleep. Taking to the witness stand, the woman told the court she did not remember the alleged assault but had woken up to her friend yelling at the man to “get off her”.

Her friend, who also gave evidence, claims she walked into the bedroom and saw the alleged victim laying on the bed with her skirt up and the man’s hand on her thigh area. The man told the court he had been “shaking” the woman telling her it was “time to get up”.

He said the alleged victim had been arguing “loudly” with her boyfriend over the phone about being at a hotel with strangers and the situation had become “uncomfortable” – he claimed he was trying to wake her up so she would leave.

The man said he had a wife and child he “loved very much” and he found the allegations to be “pretty horrific”.

“I find it devastating to be accused of something like that,” he said.

The matter was adjourned until Tuesday at 4pm.