Absconder's sister speaks out

Convicted child rapist Andrew Darling.
Convicted child rapist Andrew Darling.

The search for convicted child rapist Andrew Darling enters a fourth day, with police continuing to search Ararat and surrounding areas for the 42-year-old who fled Corella Place shortly after 2.30am on Sunday.

Darling's sister has spoken out for the first time since he absconded, telling 3AW her brother has been let down by the system.

Rose Darling said her brother was "not dangerous" and that she spoke with him just last week before he allegedly used a kitchen knife to cut off two electronic tracking bracelets fitted to both ankles and fled the facility.

"He was a bit down. He’s feeling down with the system because they’re supposed to be helping him to find accommodation and it just doesn’t seem to be working and it gets put off longer and longer," Ms Darling told 3AW.

“He’s housed around people who are quite disgusting in their behaviour and their talking and things like that and he spends a lot of time on his own there.

“He just wants them to stand true by their words that they’re going to find him somewhere to live.

“He did something years ago, when he was in his early 20s, he did commit a crime, yes, but that’s not him. That was under the influence of alcohol and at a bad time.”

Ms Darling has begged her brother to return home.

“Andrew you need to come back so we can get it sorted out and hopefully with what we’ve been bring up while you’ve been gone, we could probably get them to get the wheels moving better, making people more aware that this isn’t functioning properly,” she said.

But the concerned sister said she understood the public’s concerns surrounding her brother and said she too would be worried if a convicted child rapist moved into her neighbourhood.

“Of course they’re going to be concerned, I would be concerned myself, but the point is that Andrew has spent his time in jail,” she said.

“Andrew deserves the opportunity to get back into the community and to try and have some sort of a life, we can’t keep Andrew locked up forever because the system’s not working, it’s not fair.”

Police urge anyone who sees Darling not to approach him, but to call triple-zero.


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