‘There was no safe place for me at home, he was always there’
Victim impact statements from seven siblings sexually abused by Michael McCarville
The fourth victim of abuser Michael McCarville said: ‘He came to work on my farm. He groomed me, silenced me, manipulated me and threatened me.’
Farm labourer Michael McCarville (49) has been given a 20 year sentence for raping six children and molesting a seventh from the same family.
He worked on their family’s farm as a labourer from the age of 15 and began abusing the first child in 1982, shortly after taking up the job.
The assaults on the five brother and two sisters were spread over some 18 years and took place in sheds, outhouses and fields.
The seven victims told of their experiences at the sentencing hearing, excerpts of these are below.
The eldest sibling and the first victim was abused between 1982 and 1984 when he was aged between 11 and 13.
McCarville would buy him sweets and soft drinks and initially began touching him outside his clothes. This quickly progressed and McCarville would make out that they were having a bit of fun and would also show him pornographic magazines.
In the summer of 1984, McCarville set the boy up on “a date” with a young girl. When he found out they had not had any sexual interaction McCarville was annoyed and set out to “demonstrate” to the child what he should have done. This ended with him raping the boy for the first time.
The attacks ended when this victim strangled the abuser to the point of unconsciousness but McCarville continued to target him with mental and emotional abuse.
In his victim impact statement, the man (now 45) said “this abuse and exploitation set my life on the wrong course....destroyed a normal childhood and inflicted a life sentence on me”.
He said he was afraid “my parents would find out and blame me. I would cry myself to sleep. I prayed somebody would come and save me”.
“At times I thought this was normal. He was a master manipulator. I was delicate and easily upset. He would praise me and then put me down. He was always doing whatever he needed to do to keep me under control.
“I was extremely confused about my sexuality. I felt very awkward around people. I was always afraid around older boys, afraid they may try to abuse. I was constantly in fear. I found it impossible to trust or confide in anyone.
“There was no safe place for me at home, he was always there...The life that I should have had, that was robbed from me. I still suffer nightmares. I can smell him, I can hear his evil laugh, I can’t get away.”
McCarville began abusing the third eldest child in mid-1983. She was seven years old when he orally raped her in a milking parlour. He regularly raped her then up to the age of 13, and told her she was “his girl”.
In her victim impact statement, she said the abuse destroyed her life and that McCarville “managed to separate our family unit and turned us against each other”.
“When I was seven he used and abused me to fill his own fantasies. I really believed he cared for me. I only later realised what he was doing was wrong and I told what happened to me at school but nothing was done,” she said.
“I over eat when I’m happy and when I’m sad. I trust very few people to be with...I worry that my past is impacting on the future (of my children). I am constantly playing images of abuse in my head.
“This ripped my family apart. We were like lost souls not knowing how to deal with it. My parents lives were turned upside down.”
She said that since finding the “courage to tell the truth, I feel stronger and more positive. Our family have come together. I am proud that the impact of his legacy will no longer pay a part.”
The second eldest child was abused by McCarville from November 1983 to November 1988 when he was aged 10 to 15.
The abuse started out as groping and masturbation of the child but soon developed to oral rape in a farm shed. McCarville would also take the child to a derelict farm house and rape him there.
In his victim impact statement, he said his childhood was a “very short” one that ended shortly after McCarville’s arrival to the family farm.
“The years after that are just a blur,” he said.
“There was physical and mental abuse on a daily basis...I began drinking at 13 and was drinking heavily at 15. I left school early to get away and moved to England later.
“I still suffers from flashbacks of abuse. I become very angry. If it wasn’t for my wife I wouldn’t be able to make this statement”.
The fourth child was abused and raped between the age of seven and 16. McCarville began anally raping him when he was 15. He said he suffered nightmares, bed wetting and sleep walking as a result of the constant abuse.
In his victim impact statement, he said he had been “silenced all my life because of what he did to me. I am silenced no longer”.
“What happened to me will never go away. It affects me every day. I am a victim of child sex abuse. It has set my life on the wrong course, destroyed my childhood and teenage years,” he said.
“He came to work on my farm. He groomed me, silenced me, manipulated me and threatened me...He used to tell me it would kill your mother if anyone found out. I still get a feeling of humiliation. I lived in utter fear of my parents finding out.
“I grieve a grief for all the things I have lost. I suffered several mental breakdowns last year and became suicidal. He handed me a life sentence when I was a small boy.”
McCarville sexually assaulted the girl on on two occasions in 1988 and 1990. She was aged just seven when he stripped her, molested her and masturbated himself in front of her. The second time, in 1990, he stripped her but he was disturbed.
In her victim impact statement, she said that when McCarville “sexually abused me I felt special”.
“He made a promise I would get something special. When I called him out on this (the next day), he was shocked. He realised he wouldn’t get away with it.
“The aftermath on the family is so enormous The hurt and sadness is even more horrendous...as I can’t cope with all that they had to go through in their childhood and are still going through.”
The sixth victim was 10 when he saw McCarville molesting his older brother and ran to tell his mother. McCarville caught him and warned him not to tell or he would get himself and his brother into trouble.
He began grooming him then and soon began molesting him and his brother together. A year later he first tried to anally rape this child by hanging him across a gate. For the next six years he raped him on a regular basis.
In his victim impact statement, he said he thought he had a good childhood until the abuse began but it was “hard to remember the good times due to the horrific time I went through and am still going through”.
“For years I thought I had taken the abuse to protect the rest of my family. I knew to some degree what he was doing was wrong,” he said.
He recalled planning to take his life when he was 16 or 17 but being found by McCarville, who talked him down and promised he would not do anything.
“Later that day he again sexually abused me and told me I was lucky he didn’t tell my mother what I had done, it would kill her.”
He said his education suffered badly but he managed to get into university.
“(McCarville) came to visit and sexually abused me,” he said.
“When my ex-wife became pregnant I fell to pieces. I began to drink heavily. I was terrified I would be an abuser and an awful father.
“I was angry I hadn’t the courage to bring my abuser to justice. I seemed to be the only one in the family that wanted to talk about the abuse. This caused massive rifts in the family.
“Finding out about the extent of the abuse was a massive shock to me. I thought I had protected them all for years.”
Now aged 34, McCarville began molesting him at the age of 10. When he was 13 or 14 he was raped orally.
McCarville later began taking him by car to a derelict farm house and anally raping him, which continued on a weekly basis until just before he turned 17.
In his victim impact statement, he said his childhood was taken from me and there was a lot of fighting in the family due to McCarville “working us against each other”.
“Why was I not stronger? If I had told our parents, would our lives have been different? The abuse has torn our family apart,” he said.
“I was shocked he could do this to so many members of my family and get away with it. No family should ever have to go through this.”