Park ban for repeat indecency offender

Hagley ParkA 27-year-old man has been banned from going to Hagley Park and the Botanic Gardens while he awaits sentencing for a series of indecency offences.

Daniel Wayne Edwards appeared in the Christchurch District Court today and pleaded guilty to a charge of doing an indecent act in a public place – the women’s toilets at the Botanic Gardens.

Edwards, a cleaner who lives in the central city, was granted bail by Judge Jane Farish for his remand for sentence on March 7, but she imposed the park ban at the request of the police.

Edwards was already on bail after being charged with three indecency offences last year. He was charged with doing an indecent act with intent to offend three women, and another charge of doing an indecent act in a public place, the Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology.

He had admitted those charges and was remanded for sentence this month, but that sentencing was earlier put off until March 7 when it was found he had been arrested again.

The court was told that probation was recommending an intensive supervision sentence for the earlier offending.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Chris Scott said Edwards went into the women’s public toilets next to the children’s playground in the Botanic Gardens about 7pm on January 3 and entered a cubicle.

At the time the playground was busy with parents and children playing, and the women’s toilets were being used by girls and their mothers.

Edwards stayed in the women’s toilets for about an hour during which time he took off all of his clothes and stood naked in a cubicle.

A woman went into the toilets and while she was washing her hands she saw a man standing naked in a corner cubicle with his hands in his groin area.

As she turned to leave she saw the man exit the cubicle and watch her leaving.

Edwards admitted the facts to the police. He said he had a problem with sexual behaviour in inappropriate places. He said he was actively looking for help and asked the police for assistance, Sergeant Scott told the court.

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