By Cam Lucadou-Wells
A convicted paedophile has denied moving in with a Cranbourne family including a 16-year-old girl without reporting his change-of-address to police, a court has heard.
Jason Griffin had been arrested at the address on 20 March – 18 days after failing to appear at a Frankston court and declining to return calls from police, informant Detective Senior Constable Darren Prestney told a Dandenong Magistrates’ Court bail hearing that day.
Griffin had been allegedly staying with a woman, her daughter and adult son every night for two weeks, despite being bailed to a specific Cranbourne West address.
The daughter had allegedly been staying under the same roof for each of those nights, DSC Prestney told the court.
When the son spoke to police, Griffin threatened to throw water at the son, then put his hands around the son’s throat and choked him, the informant said.
As a registered sex offender, Griffin was required to report to police within one day of being in contact with a child and changing his address, DSC Prestney said.
The accused had failed to promptly report to police several changes in personal circumstance in 2016, including a change in job, phone number and vehicle in June and losing his job in September, the court was told.
He had then failed to appear at Frankston Magistrates’ Court on 2 March for the alleged breaches, the court heard.
Since then, Griffin had not allegedly returned the informant’s phone call, text message and voice-mail to his home phone number.
DSC Prestney told the court he’d visited Griffin’s nominated bail address and left a message with an occupant on 11 March.
After his arrest, Griffin gave a no-comment police interview, the court was told.
Griffin had been placed on the register for 15 years after being convicted in the Victorian County Court in 2010 for penetration of a child under 16, the informant said.
Sen Const Prestney said Griffin had been told of his reporting obligations several times since his first annual interview with police in August 2013.
Griffin told the court he’d been worried for his ex-partner and family when she was recently hospitalised and put in an induced coma with a “packed up” liver and kidneys.
He denied he’d been living “anywhere else” other than his bail address.
“I had so much going on, I forgot about court,” he said.
“All of this has just rattled me because I didn’t know what to do.
“She might not be able to make it. So if she dies, what happens there?”
Magistrate Pauline Spencer said she wasn’t satisfied Griffin had shown cause for bail.
“You’re saying you missed a court date due to this issue with your partner, but I don’t have confirmation of that.”
Ms Spencer adjourned Griffin’s bail application, awaiting more evidence.
Griffin was remanded in custody to appear at Dandenong Magistrates’ Court on 29 March.