Television star Maggie Kirkpatrick has been found guilty of indecently assaulting a minor during the 1980s, The Telegraph reports.
The Melbourne Magistrate’s Court heard that, in 1984, the actress had allegedly assaulted an unnamed 14-year-old female fan at her home in Prahran, Victoria.
In a statement read to the court, the victim revealed that she had not reported the abuse until 2013 for fear of being called “crazy”, The Telegraph states. The teen was a patient in a psychiatric hospital and was being treated for substance abuse and a personality disorder at the time, and claimed a woman who worked with Kirkpatrick helped her to arrange a visit with the actress.
Kirkpatrick, best known for her role as the prison warden Joan Ferguson in the hit TV show Prisoner, reportedly collected the teen from the hospital and took her to her house. There they watched TV together and shared a meal before the assault occurred in the TV star’s bedroom.
Although Kirkpatrick has denied the allegations, the judge said he believed the victim to be a “witness of truth”. On Thursday, Kirkpatrick was found guilty of two counts of indecent assault and one count of committing an act of gross indecency with a person under 16.
According to The Guardian, the veteran actress appeared in court on Friday and was sentenced to an 18-month community corrections order for the assault on the teen. However, it is believed that Kirkpatrick intends to lodge an appeal and, according to the publication, a pre-appeal mention on Sept. 11 was listed in the County Court of Victoria.