To the nine-year old boy who likes to colour and play at school, the man who visited his home was “Uncle Dave.”
When the boy, who has learning and speech problems, went to a session with a social worker in Kamloops, he spotted Uncle Dave in a newspaper photo tacked to an office wall.
A Crown prosecutor is attempting to prove that Uncle Dave and David Jennings — who is listed on a national sex offender registry — are the same man and that Jennings sexually assaulted the boy sometime in 2011, at the boy’s bed in the family home.
Jennings is on trial for sexual assault and sexual interference of a person under 16.
The boy’s name is protected under a court order. He testified Monday, sitting beside his foster father, via a videolink from another room at the courthouse.
Before his testimony, the court watched a recorded video interview taken in June last year from a Kamloops Mountie, who asked the boy to identify body parts on a drawing.
“He did something bad to me,” the boy told the female RCMP member. “I don’t know what he was doing.”
The boy said “Uncle Dave” fondled him.
“He know’d I was awake,” he told the Mountie in the interview room.
He said Uncle Dave also told him, “’Don’t tell anyone, I won’t hurt you.’”
Earlier in the trial, social worker Duanna Johnston-Virgo said she was walking down a hallway with the boy in March last year when he suddenly stopped to look at a picture of Jennings, a newspaper clipping and story warning of his modus operandi of befriending families and targeting children.
The social worker said Jennings did “not nice things to children” on their “privates.”
“He sounded surprised,” Virgo-Johnston testified. He said, “‘no, that’s my uncle.’”
Johnston-Virgo said the boy told her that Uncle Dave was a friend of his mother who visited their home.
“I tried to bring it up in the session to discuss how to keep ourselves safe,” the social worker testified. “He continued to change the subject…to avoid the conversation.”
The trial is scheduled to continue Tuesday.
At the beginning of the trial, Jennings told his lawyer, Murray Armstrong, to ask judge Stephen Harrison for an order protecting his identity from publication because he gets a “hard time” in jail.
But Harrison said there is no authority to grant that protection.