Hookey takes the stand

The teenage complainant in a sexual assault case allegedly offered sexual favours to the accused, Shane Hookey, in the belief she would receive marijuana in return, a court heard yesterday.

Hookey, a 21-year-old landscaper from South Grafton, took the stand yesterday to give evidence in response to allegations he indecently assaulted the girl on two separate occasions last year.

Dressed in a white collared shirt and blue jeans, Hookey told the court he had first met the alleged victim when he rejected her approaches to buy marijuana from him in late 2003.

Hookey said he saw the girl again about a month later while involved in a conversation with two other men in a Grafton park, but denied making lewd gestures and putting his hand between her legs, as she had earlier claimed.

Defence counsel Sandra O'Campo then asked Hookey to tell the court how he had come to be in the Shoppingworld stairwell with the alleged victim.

Hookey told the court he had been riding his bicycle home past Shoppingworld when the girl yelled out to him.

"She walked up to me and said 'can you get me some marijuana' and I said 'only if you've got money'," Hookey told the court.

The court then heard the girl asked Hookey to give her the marijuana on 'tick', but was refused because Hookey said he was selling the drugs for someone else.

Hookey said the girl offered him sexual favours in return for some marijuana, to which he agreed.

The court heard the pair entered a Shoppingworld stairwell, descending the steps into a corridor that led to another exit connected to a basement carpark.

Hookey claimed they both walked to the end of the corridor to check what was on the other side of the fire escape door.

The court heard the alleged victim had earlier denied doing this and claimed the door could not be opened from inside the stairwell, a claim Ms O'Campo had tried to disprove during her cross-examination of the Crown's witnesses.

Upon returning to the stair-well corridor, Hookey claimed the pair faced each other and began kissing.

He said he had unbuttoned her pants and had pulled them down before kissing her breast and touching her vagina while she played with his penis.

The court heard the alleged victim had earlier claimed Hookey had stuck his fingers in her vagina and that she had not consented to the acts.

Ms O'Campo asked Hookey how the girl reacted to his actions.

"Was she struggling with you?"

"Was she squirming?"

Hookey answered 'no' to each question.

Hookey then told the court the pair decided to leave the stairwell after being caught with their pants down by a Shopping- world employee.

He said they had a 'kiss and a cuddle' as they left the stairwell before the girl masturbated him on stairs leading to a fire exit at the top entrance.

Hookey said he ejaculated into her hand before the pair again had a 'kiss and a cuddle' and parted ways.

During his cross-examination, Crown Prosecutor Nicolas Harrison asked Hookey why he failed to give the girl any marijuana, claiming he had time to do so.

Hookey said the deal had been that they would go to the Glenwood Tourist Park in South Grafton to smoke the cannabis, but he had ultimately refused after they left the stairwell because he felt it was too far and he needed to get home.

The trial continues today.

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