Gang rape victim tortured with chainsaw demands justice
THE victim of one of Tasmania's most depraved "psychopathic" rapists has formally joined the #LetHerSpeak campaign to reform the state's sexual assault victim gag laws, and will take her fight to be named to the Supreme Court of Tasmania.
Alicia*, now aged 51, was abducted and gang-raped in 1986 by Jamie John Curtis and his 16-year-old accomplice. She was then tortured with a chainsaw and locked in the boot of a car while Curtis and his accomplice stabbed to death Alicia's 22-year-old fiance, Dean Allan Allie, just metres away.
On Friday, Curtis will be considered for parole, having served 32 years in prison for the gang rape and murder.
Alicia wants to speak out using her real name to warn the public of the danger Curtis poses to the community. But Tasmania's archaic victim gag laws - Section 194K of the Evidence Act - prohibits her from doing so.
"The killer already knows my real name. The gag law doesn't protect me one bit," says Alicia. "It just works to silence me."
Alicia says she wants to tell her story so "the Parole Board understand who it is they are considering letting loose on the public again".
In April last year, Curtis was released on parole for the first time, despite medical advice that he still displayed a "high number of psychopathic traits" which "cannot be cured". In October he was re-arrested after allegedly assaulting another woman who he had met online through one of a number of dating websites he signed up to in the weeks following his release. He has been held in prison ever since.
"He should never have been allowed out of jail in the first place," says Alicia.
"I considered moving when I heard he would be released. I took leave from work for almost the entirety of his parole.
"His freedom ended my freedom."
After she was informed Curtis was applying for re-release, Alicia wrote to the Parole Board on May 9 urging its members to meet her. Her request was denied on May 17 and Alicia was invited to write a letter instead.
"That's not good enough. The Parole Board needs to look me in the eye and listen to me.
"Jamie Curtis is a monster. I know this better than anyone else alive.
"If the Parole Board refuses to meet with the victims, and the law says I can't use my own name, what am I supposed to do to get heard?"
Nina Funnell is a Walkley award-winning journalist and the creator of the #LetHerSpeak campaign in partnership with End Rape On Campus Australia and Marque Lawyers.