An NRL star had consumed as many as 20 alcoholic drinks earlier than touching a girl’s breasts without her consent at a popular Sydney resort.
In Sydney’s Downing Center Local Court, Parramatta Eels star Dylan Brown pleaded guilty on Wednesday to touching the girl’s breast twice without her consent at the Golden Sheaf Hotel in Dubbulbay on June 3.
He was charged with 5 counts of sexually touching a girl without consent, but three of them were dropped by the police.
The 23-year-old took the stand earlier than Magistrate Jennifer Atkinson, clothed in his back, as his barrister David Newham suggested to the courtroom that Brown accept responsibility for the 2 charges.
The courtroom was heard reading from a letter of apology Brown had sent to the victim, which read: “Forgiveness is not something I feel I have the right to ask for… I am very sorry for my actions towards you.”
Parramatta Eels star Dylan Brown was charged with 5 counts of sexually touching a girl without consent, but three of them were dropped by police.
Brown will be seen on the dance floor on the Golden Beam that night. He had “15 to 20 drinks”, the court heard
Mr Newham said Brown’s offenses had been committed in just 25 seconds, but “the football career he had worked so hard to build” was now broken.
According to courtroom documents, the 20-year-old victim was at the Golden Sheaf dance floor with a friend when Brown, whom she did not know, walked up to her and grabbed her left breast.
Moments later, Brown touched her other breast, urging her to push it away.
“This made the victim feel uncomfortable because she did not give him permission to touch her,” the agreed truth sheet said.
Mr Newham advised the courtroom that it was OK for the 20-year-old victim to each “walk out without the threat of assault” and said Brown knew “what problems he has today”.
“When Mr. Brown saw the video footage, the reality of the behavior dawned on him, he closed his eyes and bowed his head,” Newham told the courtroom. “Shock when he saw what he did.”
Mr Newham said Brown had had 15-20 drinks throughout the night and had no recollection of the offence, but said his consumption was “much more” than the cost.
Brown, supported by his mum and dad and a sporting activities manager, sat at the entrance to the vast public gallery as his lawyer advised the courtroom of his “generosity” and “big heart”.
The courtroom was told he worked with autistic youngsters and homeless people in Parramatta, while also donating money to youth charities.
“He didn’t want it to come out in court … not because of his ego or his fame, he has a great mind and a generous heart,” Newham said.
The courtroom was told that Brown had additionally written a letter of apology to the victim.
Dylan Brown’s victim was with a friend on the Golden Bunch dance floor when Brown walked up to her and grabbed her left breast before touching her other breast.
Mr Newham asked Ms Atkinson to bear in mind that she was condemning a “good person”.
A police prosecutor agreed the younger girl was just trying to get out, “have a good night and enjoy herself” when she bumped into Brown.
“Women should go and enjoy themselves… they shouldn’t approach young men who don’t know them and grab them sexually,” the prosecutor said.
The incident was reported to website security earlier than the police were named and Brown was taken to Rose Bay Police Station, however he was given an “investigative time-out” due to his intoxication.
Ms Atkinson told the courtroom that what Brown had done was “not acceptable” and that no one “should be subjected to it” after leaving.
She said it was “worrying” that he had consumed a lot of alcohol and urged him to “seek help”.
“That young lady, she walked out, she had a right to be in the venue, she had a right to be on the dance floor, a right to be free of whatever was going on,” Atkinson said.
“We have to admit our losses.”
Ms Atkinson accepted that Brown admitted harm to the victim, but sentenced him to pay each cost.
Brown was sentenced to 18 months of community service.
“I’m not going to let you fail… you have to learn from it,” the magistrate declared.
“You have some work to do.”
In the courtroom, Newham told the media that Brown was “deeply remorseful” for what he had done.
“But the case is now over and he wants to move on,” he announced without answering further questions.
New Zealand-born Brown has played 95 games for the Eels since making his state debut in 2019 aged just 18.
As soon as the information became public, the NRL exercised its discretion below the ‘no fault’ coverage, leaving Brown on the sidelines.
“The Parramatta Eels have informed the NRL that Dylan Brown has been removed from the team under the NRL’s no-fault withdrawal policy in relation to the (alleged) incident last weekend,” a press release said. . .
“Dylan will not be eligible for selection until he has been cleared by the NRL.
“Out of respect for the ongoing legal process, the club will not be making any further comments at this time.”
The NRL is expected to make a decision on Brown’s future participation in the coming days.