Mandurama baby sex assault and manslaughter: Father's anger over sentence

THE father of an 11-month-old baby girl who was sexually assaulted and died at the hands of her carer has labelled the judicial system "a joke" after her killer received just an additional five months' jail on his sentence after being convicted last week of raping the infant.

Brendon Toohey, 40, was sentenced in 2017 to seven-and-a-half years' jail for manslaughter after the baby suffered critical injuries at her Mandurama home in April 2014.

And last week he was sentenced to four years, six months (three years non-parole) on a charge of sexual intercourse with a person under 10, under authority.

The sentence has left baby's father [who cannot be identified for legal reasons] "angry, disgusted and shocked".

He described Toohey as an animal who, he believed, would always remain a threat to the community.

The father said that from the outset, the punishment bestowed on Toohey had been inadequate.

"When he was convicted of manslaughter, he should have got the maximum then, not seven-and-a-half years," he said.

He said he couldn't believe someone convicted of sexual assault against an 11-month old baby would only get an additional five months in jail.

"I'm lost for words," he said. "There is no other way to describe it."

The father said he sat through the murder trial, but couldn't bear to sit through the sexual assault matter.

"I just couldn't sit there and listen to it," he said, adding the loss of his daughter, and the manner in which she died, had taken an incredible toll on him, and he is now heavily medicated just to get through the day.

He said his mother went to the sexual assault trial in Sydney last week to ensure his daughter was represented, and said having to sit and listen to details about his daughter's final moments was soul-destroying for her.

"Mum's tough, but she's not coping at all," he said. "She's a mess. Who wouldn't be?

"We will never get over this. People say it gets easier, but I don't think it does."

The man's mother, who also cannot be identified, said what Toohey did was "absolutely hideous".

"She was an 11-month-old baby, I just can't get my head around it," she said.

The baby's grandmother said her granddaughter was a beautiful baby, reaching all the usual milestones.

"She was teething and doing everything she was supposed to be doing," she said.

The fact Toohey is now eligible for parole is weighing heavily on the father's mind.

"I just don't know how anyone who has done something as heinous as this can get out," he said.

"How could he do it? I'll never understand. He's pure evil.

"If what he did was an explosion of anger or he lost control, who's to say he won't do it again … he will do it again."

The father said he hopes the Director of Public Prosecutions will appeal Toohey's sentence.

"He needs to stay locked up," he said.

We will never get over this. People say it gets easier, but I don't think it does.

The baby's father, who cannot be identified

As for his daughter, he said she will never be forgotten.

"I think about her all the time. I see other babies and think about her - what age she would be now. It breaks my heart.

"I wonder what she would be like."

He said Toohey's sentence brought back all his feelings of rage and despair at the death of his daughter.

He said he wakes up in a cold sweat and has had terrible nightmares since his daughter's death.

"[In the dreams] I can see him belting her, but I can't get there to save her," he said.

"I also dream she's in my arms, and then she's gone - that's the worst one."

The charges against Toohey stem back to April 2014, when the girl suffered critical injuries at her Mandurama home.

Toohey maintained she fell from a trampoline and hit her head on the lid of a concrete septic tank while he was taking clothes off the line. In the days following her death, he was charged with her murder.

He was also charged with sexual intercourse with a person under 10, under authority, a charge which was heard separately in the Parramatta District Court last Thursday.

Brendon Toohey is now eligible for parole.

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