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True extent of ex-policeman Brad Shipton’s crimes may never be known – advocate

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Help chief executive Kathryn McPhillips says there could be more unknown victims of Brad Shipton. Photo / Sarah Robson

By RNZ

Warning: This story contains references to sexual abuse

An advocate for survivors of sexual abuse says the true extent of Brad Shipton’s crimes may never come to light.

The former policeman and convicted rapist died this week aged 65 after suffering early onset dementia.

Brad Shipton was convicted for his part in the 1989 pack rape of a woman in Mount Maunganui.

In a 2009 parole hearing, Shipton confessed to the rape for which he had been imprisoned reportedly saying his life had been full of “disgraceful, disgusting” behaviour.

He and two other police officers were later found not guilty of raping victim advocate, Louisa Nicholas, when she was a teenager.

Help chief executive Kathryn McPhillips said there could be more unknown victims of Shipton.

“Really, we don’t know how many victims there are of this man because we don’t know if everybody came forward so news of his death may be more triggering for some people than we know.

“My thoughts are with … known victims and if there are any unknown victims.”

Shipton caused significant harm, said McPhillips.

Former policeman Brad Shipton, who died this week aged 65, was convicted for his part in the 1989 pack rape of a woman in Mount Maunganui.
Former policeman Brad Shipton, who died this week aged 65, was convicted for his part in the 1989 pack rape of a woman in Mount Maunganui.

“He wasn’t willing to stand up and take responsibility for that harm so in a sense that’s double harm … it means that somebody has to go through a very difficult time with the justice system.”

McPhillips said the story of Shipton’s offending triggered a significant change in police to better support complainants of sexual assault.

“We now have funding across the country for a specialist person to support somebody through that police reporting process.

“We have a sexual assault division in police national headquarters staffed by people who are very concerned about victims so things are very different than they were.”

McPhillips urged anyone who may be a victim of sexual assault to contact their local support services to help them through the process of making a complaint.

– RNZ



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