24 Jun 2016

Rapist CYF caregiver 'destroyed' victim's life

9:26 pm on 24 June 2016

The victim of a former Child, Youth and Family caregiver says his abuse of her destroyed her life.

Frank Russell Walmsley appears today at High Court in Timaru.

Frank Russell Walmsley in the High Court in Timaru Photo: RNZ/Conan Young

Frank Russell Walmsley, a former Oamaru caregiver, was found guilty of 52 sexual assault charges, including 12 counts of rape, after a three-week trial in the High Court in Timaru.

The 57-year-old was sentenced today to 22 years in prison with a minimum non-parole period of 10 years for sexual offending against seven girls and one boy.

Walmsley did not give evidence during the trial but denied the charges.

A number of the crimes, relating to four of the victims, date back to when Walmsley ran the Oamaru Child Youth and Family (CYF) home from 1995 to 2000.

The others were committed between 2005 and 2012.

The victim, who cannot be named, spent time at the care home he ran and told the court today he treated her like a piece of fresh meat.

He would sometimes leave her genitals injured and she was never given medical help, she said.

She turned to alcohol and cannabis to deal with the trauma, and this resulted in her three children being taken off her and put into the care of Child Youth and Family, which left her fearing the same thing would happen to them, she said.

In a statement this afternoon, CYF deputy chief executive Viv Rickard said Walmsley had not only betrayed the organisation's trust and that of the young people he abused, he had also damaged the reputation of the many caregivers who provided loving, nurturing homes for children in their care.

CYF was truly sorry about what had happened to the young people in Walmsley's care, Mr Rickard said.

Since the abuse had occurred, CYF had significantly improved its processes and protocols around investigating sexual abuse allegations, he said.