Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in the Newcastle Anglican diocese | live blog

By Joanne McCarthy and Dominica Sanda
Updated December 12 2017 - 7:13am, first published August 2 2016 - 12:00am
Former Bishop of Newcastle Roger Herft at day one of the royal commission in Newcastle.

Tuesday, August 2

Day one recap:

  • There was a full court room for the first day of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in the Newcastle Anglican diocese with lawyers and members of the public standing.
  • Today’s hearing focused on Father Peter Rushton and St Alban’s youth worker James (Jim) Michael Brown
  • Evidence was given by victims Paul Gray and Phillip D’Ammond and Suzan Aslin, the mother of an abuse survivor
  • Abuse survivor Mr Gray broke down in tears as he told the comission that on many occasions father Peter Rushton would cut Mr Gray’s back with a small knife and smear his blood on his back – which was symbolic of the blood of Christ –  as he continued to rape him
  • In an emotional speech, Mr D’Ammond told the commission Jim Brown would take him out during the day to do normal things like going shopping and working on his hot rod, but at night Jim would assault Mr D’Ammond
  • Mrs Aslin and her son Ian went to dinner at Jim Brown’s house, where Mrs Aslin found stacks of pornographic magazines under Mr Brown’s bed
  • Counsel assisting Naomi Sharp said it was expected that former archdeacon Colvin Ford would tell the commission that he perceived that Rushton was protected by the gang of three.

3.50pm

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