The Proserpine Court House
The Proserpine Court House Peter Carruthers

Abuse survivor passes on trauma to local mums

A PORNOGRAPHY- addicted survivor of child abuse who randomly targeted two Whitsunday mothers in April by recording their genitals was forced to leave the region after threats from the victims' partners.

Former Sunshine Coast man Matthew Peter Nott had only been in the Whitsundays a month before he committed the crimes.

He pleaded guilty in Proserpine Magistrates Court on Monday to two counts of recording a breach of privacy in the genital region on Monday.

Magistrate Simon Young read out part of a victim impact statement describing how a mother was now afraid to leave the house without her husband, no longer wore dresses and was on anti-depressants as a result of being secretly recorded on Nott's phone.

"I am afraid to go outside where this shameless predator may be lurking,” the victim wrote.

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Hannah Beard told the court the 26-year-old Nott was shopping in Woolworths in Whitsunday Plaza at around 9.50am on April 17 when he crouched down next to the first victim's feet.

Nott then slid his phone under the victim's dress while he pretended to look at items on the shelves.

Nott was then caught on CCTV entering Live Life Pharmacy and repeating the secret filming routine another three times with a mother who was holding her toddler.

"He denied the offence and was very nervous when interviewed. Police found he had factory reset his mobile phone and removed his sim card and memory card,” Sen Const Beard said.

Duty lawyer Elizabeth Smith said Nott normally worked at a market stall with his partner of three years, who was in court showing her support.

"He has no explanation for the offending and is incredibly remorseful for the behaviour,” Ms Smith said.

"As soon as he got home he told his partner and confessed and deleted the videos without watching them.

"He has never seen the videos and he completed a completed reset on his phone.

"One of the other reasons he left the area was that he was threatened with assault by the victim's family and friends.”

The court heard a psychologist had put Nott's pornography addiction down to the abuse he suffered as a child.

Mr Young described the crimes as "very serious breaches and invasions of privacy” and the community "rightly feels very strongly about this antisocial conduct”.

"There must be a strong denunciation of this behaviour.''

Mr Young said Nott had perpetrated the same behaviour which had caused him psychological trauma on other people "who did not deserve it” and had "stripped them of their dignity”.

"I must denounce the threats made against him (Nott)... courts exist for imposing the appropriate punishment on the offender.”

Mr Young cited Nott's good prospects for rehabilitation in sentencing him to two years' probation. Convictions were recorded.

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