Australia Keelie McMahon can't understand why police ignored years of allegations against paedophile nurse James Geoffrey Griffin

01:34  27 february  2021
01:34  27 february  2021 Source:   abc.net.au

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James Geoffrey Griffin died just after police laid child sex abuse charges against him last year . Key points: James Geoffrey Griffin was accused of a number of sexual offences but never Mr Griffin , 69, worked as a registered nurse on the Spirit of Tasmania, at the Ashley Youth Detention Keelie McMahon was one of five women who came forward with allegations of abuse by Mr Griffin .

Former paediatric nurse James Geoffrey Griffin was facing child sexual abuse allegations when he died last year and it will now be up to a commission of inquiry to investigate his alleged crimes. Here's what we know about how the allegations came to light. Who was James Griffin ? Mr Griffin , better known as Jim , studied at Burnie's Marist College — itself an institution which has been the centre of child sex abuse claims. As an adult, he worked across multiple government sites, including the Spirit of Tasmania, Ambulance Tasmania, the University of Tasmania, the Launceston General Hospital (LGH)

a person smiling for the camera: Sexual abuse survivor Keelie McMahon can't understand why police didn't act sooner. (ABC News: Jessica Moran) © Provided by ABC NEWS Sexual abuse survivor Keelie McMahon can't understand why police didn't act sooner. (ABC News: Jessica Moran)

Keelie McMahon is angry and cannot fathom why it took so long for Tasmania Police to charge a paediatric nurse with child sex offences, as complaints piled up against him.

For years, James Geoffrey Griffin worked as a registered nurse at the Paediatric Centre at the Launceston General Hospital (LGH), on the Spirit of Tasmania ferry and at the Ashley Youth Detention Centre. He also worked as a massage therapist for children's sporting teams.

In September 2019, Griffin, aged 69, was charged with a number of criminal offences involving the repeated sexual abuse of a child, after a woman told police he had abused her when she was 11 and he was 58.

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The alleged abuse by James ' Jim ' Geoffrey Griffin has been described as "absolutely abhorrent". Mr Griffin was a registered nurse for about 19 years . The Health Minister has apologised to any victims. She said the Tasmanian Health Service (THS) had encouraged staff to come forward with any details that might help police , as well as setting up a contact point for members of the public. "We have clearly seen a failure if we have seen these types of allegations happen here in Tasmania," she said.

Allegations link. Edit for clarity: Here is the specific mention of sexual assault in the twitter thread, which is a distinct allegation from the one u/hands has highlighted: "I froze so he had to move my body into a missionary position. He pulled off my cargo pants. He forced himself in- there was no attempt at "warming up". With that being said, it is worth reading the entire thread to give respect to the survivor and to understand her story. Additional information from can be found on the Nine Inch Nails sub.

By October 2019, four other women had spoken to police and made similar complaints of sexual abuse ranging from the late 1980s through to 2012.

Griffin died by suicide on October 19, 2019, and the coroner noted he had "made admissions" to police, and forensic searches of his home "located a significant amount of child exploitation material".

An internal Tasmanian police review found the first allegation against Griffin was made in 2009 and there were issues with information sharing between agencies, such as child protection and police.

Keelie McMahon, who alleged she was first abused by Griffin when she was 14, said reading the review into how the investigation against the Launceston nurse was handled had made her angry.

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"I read it two, three, four times and it just all sank in that this was happening while I was young, and that this was happening while he abused me, this was happening while multiple people I know were being abused," she said.

"I can't comprehend how many young people have been affected by this, that wouldn't have had to be if the police had done their job properly, if the hospital had done their job properly.

"There are so many people out there suffering with trauma and having to deal with this everyday because they didn't do their job.

"It just doesn't make sense to me how so many people in such a high position could see that he was doing these things and just go 'yeah let's not worry about it, let's not take it any further, let's just let these children suffer and be abused', just because they put it in the too-hard basket." she said.

Trail of allegations

The review revealed police received information about potential child abuse in relation to Griffin in 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2019, when police finally charged him.

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This information is not confirmed at this time, but social media is abuzz with the posts. If anyone can confirm this information, please contact us or post your updates below. . . Below are some items that could use crowdsourcing for truth. If you have more information, please join the conversation.

27 years has passed and if you would have told me the condition of law enforcement today, I would have never believed you. It’s not that law enforcement has changed for the worse but everything around it has. The mentally ill used to get treatment and now they just send cops. The media used to highlight the positive contribution our profession gave to society and now they either ignore it or twist the truth for controversy to line their own pockets. There used to be a common respect among criminals.

As far back as 2011, child protection told Tasmania Police of sexual assaults on two unidentified victims.

A spokesman for the Department of Communities Tasmania, which handles child protection, released a statement saying it was working closely with police to strengthen information-sharing procedures.

Tasmania Police Commissioner Darren Hine apologised to Griffin's victims.

"We are truly sorry for any harm caused to the victims who were let down by deficiencies in our investigative processes at the time."

Ms McMahon said saying sorry did not ease the burden she carried every day.

"No, not even close, sorry doesn't fix the years of suffering that myself and all the other survivors have gone through," she said.

"It doesn't take away the mental trauma and everything that we've had to deal with and that we're going to have to deal with for the rest of our lives."

Survivors must be heard

The CEO of Tasmania's Sexual Assault Support Service (SASS) Jill Maxwell said the revelation about the lack of action over so many years highlighted the importance of survivors being heard.

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"It takes a huge amount of courage for someone to talk about their experience as a survivor," she said.

"If someone works up the courage to disclose that they've experienced sexual assault or sexual violence of any nature, how important it is for us to hear them and let them know we've heard them and that we believe them."

"If that happens, it helps the survivor recover from the trauma much better than having not felt heard through any of that process."

Ms Maxwell said she thought the culture of reporting sexual abuse was changing with evidence more survivors were coming forward.

"It has almost doubled over the last couple of years and over the past five years the number of people accessing our service has increased by 74 per cent."

"But we've still got a long way to go as a community to change those attitudes about hearing their stories, believing them and addressing the system gaps that allows it to happen," she said.

Ms McMahon said change needed to happen because for every child believed there might be another saved from abuse.

"I think I need to come to terms with the fact that police knew what he was doing and because of the police, I was abused, I lost my childhood, I continued to be abused by more people as I grew up because of this one event that could have been stopped," she said.

"Now I just have to learn to deal with it, it's something I have to live with for the rest of my life."

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usr: 13
This is interesting!