A rapist who repeatedly abused a woman he held captive for days has made a last-ditch apology for his crimes but prosecutors argue it carries little weight and say he remains remorseless and a danger to the public.
Robert William Wilson raped the woman 18 times during nine attacks at his home in Darley, near Bacchus Marsh, while he held her against her will between March 25 and 29, 2019, after the pair met on dating app Badoo weeks earlier.
Robert Wilson repeatedly raped, bashed and threatened a woman over five days in 2019.Credit:Facebook
The County Court has heard Wilson committed vile and demeaning sexual acts against the woman, repeatedly punched her to the face and head, stomped on her stomach, pointed a speargun at her head and constantly asked: “Do you want to die?”.
When Wilson drove the woman to her home on the fifth day – after her friends had contacted the attacker asking where she was – one of the victim’s friends was unable to recognise the woman because of bruises and swelling to her face.
She told the court in April she was “paralysed with fear” and thought she would be killed, and wasn’t shown any mercy during the “shameful, degrading, unbearably painful” attacks.
Wilson, 35, has pleaded guilty to rape and other charges. On Friday, when his case returned to court, he had lawyer Simon Kenny offer “sincere apologies” to the woman. Kenny said Wilson took responsibility, made no excuse and understood his late apology might distress the victim.
Robert Wilson’s home in Darley, near Bacchus Marsh.Credit:Simone Fox Koob
But his words represented “development and progression”, the lawyer said, as Wilson had not previously shown any remorse, explanation or insight.
Prosecutor Ruth Champion urged judge Fiona Todd to attach little weight to the apology, as there was no sign of remorse. She said Wilson’s guilty plea came days before the scheduled trial and only in light of a strong case against him.
“The fact the offending only ceased was out of concern for himself and his criminal history,” Champion said.
Wilson, the father of two daughters, pleaded guilty to three charges of rape, which cover all the sexual offences, and single counts of false imprisonment, intentionally causing injury and theft, related to $3130 he stole from the woman.
A speargun used by Robert Wilson to threaten his victim.Credit:Victoria Police
He has prior convictions including assault and stomping on another woman’s head.
The court heard while Wilson’s admissions spared the victim being questioned in a trial before a jury, she gave evidence in earlier hearings and was distressed when asked about being stomped on.
Champion described Wilson’s rapes as serious, protracted and grave, aggravated by the fact he imprisoned her across five days, that he repeatedly beat, threatened and objectified her and took photographs and recorded video. The crimes had a “significant impact” on the woman.
Prosecutors argue the judge should consider the danger Wilson will pose to the public once he is released, and want him sentenced as a serious sex offender.
Robert Wilson will be sentenced on July 22.Credit:Facebook
Todd reiterated the concerns she expressed in April that Wilson would remain a risk when eventually released from prison.
“This period of offending is not an aberration, it arises out of his character, which is expressed in his prior convictions and what he says in the record of interview [with police],” she said.
“These are powerfully disdainful statements.”
Wilson initially told police he and the woman had consensual sex, and that he punched her a few times, but she hurt herself when she fell.
The judge will sentence Wilson on July 22 and ordered he attends court in person, despite his concern he would need to spend a fortnight in quarantine before he returned to prison.
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