Jaime was told that his mother used to ‘bash’ him as a toddler. He has an intellectual disability and was made a state ward and placed into care from the age of two. He doesn’t know much about his family as he hasn’t seen his parents or siblings since then. Jamie was placed in several homes during his childhood.
In the 1990s when Jaime was 16, he was living in a larger group home in Victoria. He attended a special needs high school nearby and was happy with his living situation. Another of the residents at the home was Craig, who was 15 at the time. Craig had made sexual overtures which made Jaime uncomfortable. Then one evening when they were alone watching television, Craig sexually attacked Jaime.
‘It came to a surprise to myself because one minute we were watching TV, all of a sudden the abuse started happening. It went from touching various things … it wasn't very nice.’
Jaime reported Craig to one of the workers. From there, Jaime went to the police and made a complaint, but nothing further happened.
Jaime said he was too busy with school and homework, and assumed the police would get back to him once they had gathered all the ‘information’. He was not told why the police did not proceed with his case.
Eventually, angered by their lack of action, he ‘took matters into his own hands’, and attempted to strangle Craig. Jaime was not charged with assault nor disciplined for his violence.
Jaime left the home and high school when he was 17. He has been in and out of trouble with the police ever since. He's prone to outbursts of violence, which led first to juvenile detention, then adult jail. He has spent much of his adult life in custody. He says he ‘gets picked on’ in prison and often retaliates with violence.
Craig’s abuse is something that Jaime wants to forget but can’t. He thinks about it many times a day. Jaime suffers from anxiety and depression, and is on medication to help him cope. In custody, he is regularly visited by a psychiatrist but he says he hasn’t spoken about the abuse.
‘At times I sit there and think about it. You never really forget about these things … it scars you for life. I like to try and forget about it but there’s times when it comes up. It plays on my depression.’
Jaime will be released shortly. He cannot wait to get out of jail and ‘stay out of trouble’. He is ‘overwhelmed’ with the support he has been offered out in the community. Jaime would like to contact his brother to ‘get to know him’ once he is released. He also looks forward to seeing his children.