How a disturbed, drug-addicted woman hijacked the justice system using bizarre false allegations to deny her husband contact with his children.
It was twenty years ago when my son, I’ll call him “Andrew,” was living in a house I owned and met the woman (K) who was to become the mother of his children.
When she met Andrew, K was in a lesbian relationship and when that ended she moved onto another one which turned out to be violent. K had an addiction to ice, was a self-harmer and had threatened suicide. Andrew often ‘rescued’ K from harm and at some point, a romantic relationship began between them.
She fell pregnant and went on to have 2 more children with him. After the third child was born K began to drink very heavily and behave dangerously and erratically.
She was admitted to a Mental Health Unit and visited by the Department of Community Services. DOCS noted that K was a neglectful mother and recommended that the children be cared for by Andrew who they had assessed as being a fit and proper parent.
Realising that she might well lose her children if she continued to drink and neglect them, she started telling various people including DOCS that she had been sexually abused by Andrew. DOCS’ records show that K begged them not to contact Andrew - she only wanted them to ‘know’ about it - not do anything about it. Go figure.
Tellingly, all the people she told about the alleged abuse were not familiar with the family’s normal day-to-day life. Everyone close to the family was completely unaware of these allegations she was making. K kept her ‘friend groups’ entirely separate from one another.
By this stage K was drinking and also (unbeknownst to us until later) injecting ice. Andrew was working as a FIFO worker and K was in charge of the finances. She was spending in excess of $500 per day on drugs. The result was a financial disaster and I had to spend about $25,000 to clear their debts.
K again ended up in a Mental Health Unit. She was a belligerent and violent patient but still managed to get drugs. Andrew gave up another good job to care for the children. Again, DOCS found K to be an unfit mother and Andrew to be a fit and capable parent.
The next few years were a nightmare for everyone with multiple visits to the home by police and ambulances to deal with K’s drug psychosis and outrageous behaviour.
Then came a relatively good year when K behaved like a reasonable human being and I was hopeful we had turned a corner. However, when I told Andrew and K that it was my intention to sell the house they were living in and suggested that they knuckle down and start saving for their own house things became worse than ever. It was a nice house in a nice area and I had charged them a below-market rent.
I believe that at this moment K began to formulate a plan to exit the marriage and get government housing using domestic violence allegations. She did a TAFE course focussed on domestic violence and whilst doing this course she assaulted Andrew. The police were called. They wanted Andrew to press charges against K but he didn’t want to so the police decided to bring charges themselves. K’s mother was in fact a witness to K’s violent attack and urged the police to charge her daughter!
Later that year K formed an inappropriate, unprofessional relationship with a government social worker whom she had met during the domestic violence matter. She told her ridiculous things like she was being raped, choked and assaulted on a nightly basis, and tied up in a shed (non-existent) for days on end, or tied up in the garage and repeatedly raped. In fact, K’s mother was living at the house and her bedroom was the room next to the garage. Andrew has a passive, non-confrontational nature and it is inconceivable that he could harm anyone, let alone his wife.
This particular social worker was not very bright and blindly accepted everything K said and even agreed to her demand that she was not to take any notes nor make any computer entries about the case. Luckily, this worker did keep all of the 500 text messages between them and these were later used as evidence.
The social worker introduced K to police who were made aware of the ‘severe domestic violence’ against K. From time to time K would visit the police station and pretend to be hurt. She would limp and whimper and generally pretend to be injured. The police urged her to go to a refuge and she was actually bumped up to the top of the list for placement, well ahead of women and children who were really at risk. Once, after an evening with her drug-addicted brother and her ex-transgender lover doing drugs, she went to the police station and they made up a bed for her at the station because she told them she was exhausted and stressed!
Meanwhile, life at home was comparatively normal. She was still extremely controlling and nasty to be around but that was her usual behaviour. There was no limping, nothing to suggest that she was leading this second life pretending to be a domestic violence victim.
The arrest and its aftermath
Suddenly, a few weeks later, Andrew was arrested. He had absolutely no idea what was going on. We were all shattered. He was taken to a police station and charged with rape, torture, choking, grievous bodily harm. Bail was refused and he was kept there for about a week. He was then sent to a remand centre.
Nothing will erase the memory of having to go through security to see him.
I could not have an elastic in my hair because I had to shake my head to make sure there were no drugs in my hair. I had to open my mouth so they could make sure I was not hiding drugs. My 92-year-old mother suffered the same indignities.
K finally accepted a place in a refuge where she complained about the thread-count of the sheets. Unbelievably, the local police station did a ‘whip around’ for money so that K could buy better quality sheets.
I engaged a leading criminal defence law firm and their recommended barrister. Andrew’s bail appeal had to be held in the Supreme Court and it took 5 weeks to get a hearing. The judge was scathing in his review of the quality of evidence provided by the police. Andrew was to be released - he had lost his children, his job and had been royally set up by K. But he was free.
Andrew immediately set about finding a way to see his children. We went to DOCS and had interviews and meetings. Andrew made parenting plans and jumped through every hoop they put in front of him. They did not believe that he was not the perpetrator and told him that they would not assist in any way unless he did a ‘domestic violence offender’s course’. Andrew refused this as he had never been violent to K or his children. It was obscene that DOCS automatically saw him as the perpetrator and not a victim.
The arresting officer in our case was new to the job and she made an incredible number of mistakes such as:
not knowing of K’s previous history with police and ambulance
not reading the voluminous evidence subpoenaed from the mental health unit medical records
not knowing that K was known at the local police station as a ‘druggie’.
not knowing that K had a history of unstable behaviour. There is an email where she asks K’s psychologist if she believed that K had any mental health problems. (This psychologist was also part of one of K’s ‘friendship groups’ - she believed that K had visited ‘healing rooms’ and that 3 demons had been exorcised from her!!)
not speaking to anyone who could have testified that K was not injured, did not limp when dropping the children to school or day care and played soccer in the backyard with the children
not speaking to any of Andrew’s family as we were considered as ‘hostile’
ignoring evidence that K had mental health issues, was a drug addict and was a liar. K’s mother had been living with Andrew and K for the previous 12 months and testified that she had never seen Andrew being violent and that K was indeed the violent one.
One of the rape allegations
K alleged that she had been raped with a knife and that she required 11 sutures in her vagina. The arresting officer was given two entirely different dates for this event but did not investigate the anomalies. When the officer asked K to ask her doctor for evidence of the injury and its treatment K then told her that she had not actually been to a doctor, that she did not have any stitches and that she had treated this ‘internal wound’ with Savlon and butterfly clips. Any woman would find this completely stupid!
Six weeks after the first date of this ‘knife rape’ she presented to a local doctor’s rooms with 5-6 ‘superficial scratches’ around her perineum - the doctor noted that there was no other abnormality present. Still this detective pressed on blindly. An internal wound requiring stitches had now become a few healing ‘superficial scratches’.
I’m accused of making a death threat
At one point K alleged that I had harassed her. I had not. The magistrate told her to go away and come back with better evidence. K came back with an accusation that I had sent her a ‘death threat’. This meant that I had to engage another criminal defence lawyer for myself as I couldn’t use the same firm as Andrew. After a few weeks K’s legal aid lawyer phoned and suggested that I settle the matter by giving an ‘undertaking’. On the advice of my lawyer I did so but was furious that K had the power to persecute me and that I’d had to spend about $4000 to defend myself.
The court hearing
The committal hearing lasted two days and the case was set down for trial.
At the trial K had to give her evidence in a ‘closed court’. She was a completely incompetent witness answering everything with ‘I can’t remember’. The trial lasted 8 days which included the jury hearing the 3 days of K’s evidence - which for me meant six days paying 2 solicitors and a barrister.
The evidence, which was mostly gleaned from documents given to us by the police, showed very clearly that K had been fabricating every single allegation. The police and prosecution failed in their duty of care to test the evidence Andrew was found not guilty on all counts.
After the trial – another rape allegation
In the same week that the trial ended K again was making more false allegations.
Again, we were back fighting this again. There were various allegations including that Andrew had hit K over the head with a metal pole, that a death threat had been left for her, that he had accosted her in the street. Two police visited him and asked where he was at the time the ‘death threat’ - they appeared to be satisfied with his denial. Both Andrew and I had set up personal Google map timelines to prove our whereabouts if required.
K’s worst nightmare is that her children will find out that their father, my son, is not the monster that she has portrayed him to be to them and others. To this end she will do anything to prevent them having any contact with him.
Within a few weeks she was texting another of her ‘friends’ telling this friend that she was being held captive by Andrew and that she had been raped again with a knife and that this time she required 14 stitches. She pretended to be Andrew in these texts telling this person to ‘stay away from his wife’….
Luckily this person was so worried that she contacted police who went to K’s house and interviewed her. They took her to the hospital where she refused to be examined but claimed that she had been assaulted and raped by Andrew.
This ‘event’ escalated the legal proceedings and soon we were back in a hearing in the magistrate’s court. Incredibly, K’s affidavit was the same, the exact same, copied and pasted from her 2016 affidavit.
Not one police officer asked Andrew where he was at the time that this ‘rape’ had taken place. The only contact he had with police in this latest episode was the visit regarding the alleged ‘death threat’.
I spent another $50,000 on this latest matter and again the police blindly believed this lying woman.
When it came time to present our evidence in court we could prove that Andrew was thousands of miles away in another state, providing evidence with receipts from motels, airlines, etc.
Finally, charges against K
After this latest disgraceful episode K was finally charged with ‘making a false statement’ and ‘unlawful stalking’. That was a start – but police should have charged her with many more offences like perjury, fabricating evidence, malicious intent, abuse of the legal system and police resources.
She tried to have the charges heard in the mental health court but was found to be ‘fit for trial’.
Hopefully her trial will happen later this year.
The effects of all this
This whole saga has cost me $300,000 - which doesn’t include financial losses from interest paid on monies borrowed, tax implications for accessing super early, capital gains tax penalties, loss of income. A figure of $500,000 would be closer to the mark. That’s fundamentally my retirement down the tube.
K is a deeply flawed personality. She seeks out vulnerable, naive people to whom she tells outrageous lies so that they give her the attention she craves. She has an innate ability to sense which individuals are susceptible and those who are not. She really struggles to make and keep real friends.
She has kept three innocent children apart from their Dad and all of us who love them.
Our family has suffered in many ways. Just the stress of having to deal with the enormity of it all. The fact that Andrew could well have gone to jail on the word of a lunatic. The absolutely shameful way the police handled this and failed to investigate properly. The way Andrew was treated by DOCS who prejudged him as guilty.
Andrew is on another journey now through the family courts to try and reconnect with his children. The complexity of this system is incredibly difficult to navigate - I don’t know how men do it.
It is beyond disgusting that there are no services available to men and their children in the domestic violence arena.
The biggest injustice of all to me is the fact that perjury is allowed in domestic violence matters and the family courts. I just cannot get my head around that.
Read more stories from mothers of sons who have faced injustice here