A 64-year-old man inappropriately touched an autistic, underage girl under a table at an Albany fast food restaurant while she was dining with a friend. Arnold Bert Williams appeared in Albany Magistrates Court on Friday, March 25, and pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful indecent assault. The offence was aggravated because the victim was under the age of 16. Police prosecutor Sgt Dave Loverock told the court Williams was at Hungry Jacks about 11.15am on April 15 last year when he inappropriately touched a 14-year-old girl. After using the restaurant’s toilets, Williams sat down at a table across from the girl who was sitting with a 14-year-old friend. The young teen, diagnosed with autism, did not know Williams, who was 63 at the time. Sgt Loverock said Williams was asking the girls if “they had boyfriends” and if “they wanted to come back to his house”. “The accused then put his hand on the victim’s leg and started rubbing her inner thigh,” he said. “The victim became uncomfortable and started moving her leg.” Sgt Loverock said Williams then left the restaurant. The court was told the whole interaction lasted just short of five minutes. Defence lawyer Janie Gibbs said her client did not remember being at the restaurant. “Around the time of this offence Mr Williams had been drinking excessive amounts of alcohol daily,” she said. She said while it would have been upsetting for the girl, Williams was not aware of her autism. Only when Williams was shown CCTV footage of the incident did he acknowledge his actions. Ms Gibbs said Williams was “shocked and ashamed by his behaviour” and that it was “out of character” for him. Magistrate Dianne Scaddan said the victim’s diagnosis would make it harder for her to process what had happened. “You should not be having those types of conversations,” she said. “It would have been scary and upsetting.” Ms Scaddan placed Williams on a 10-month community-based order. He will have to complete alcohol counselling.