MANY in Bathurst will be eagerly awaiting a decision from the Director of Public Prosecutions on whether an appeal is launched over the sentence handed down to a convicted child sexual abuser.
Brendan Toohey, 40, was this month sentenced to four-and-a-half years' jail (three years non-parole) for an assault on an 11-month-old baby girl.
Toohey had previously been convicted of manslaughter after the little girl died in his care and was already serving a seven-and-a-half year sentence for that crime. As the penalties were ordered to be served concurrently, however, Toohey became eligible for parole immediately.
In effect, he was given just an extra five months after being found guilty of a charge of sexual intercourse with a person under 10, under authority - a penalty many consider manifestly inadequate. We wait to see if the DPP forms the same view.
The mistreatment and death of this little 11-month-old baby is the distressing story that continues to shock us all.
First there was the Central West community's collective sadness in April 2014 when we learned the little girl, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, had died in what it was initially claimed was a tragic accident.
However, police investigators soon suspected the truth was something far more sinister.
Their inquiries led to the arrest of Brendan Toohey, 40, who was charged with the little baby's murder before being found guilty of - and jailed for - manslaughter.
The came the sexual assault charge and sentencing.
It's always hard for those who do not sit through the full excruciating details of a court case to appreciate the full meaning of a sentence, but some simply do not make sense to the rest of us.
What we do know, however, is that there can be no more defenceless victim than an 11-month-old baby.
We know that Toohey has been found guilty of both assaulting her and killing her. And we know that the first steps have been taken towards the possible release of Toohey on parole.
But if that's what we know then this is what we feel: The time's not right yet.
And we feel the community would also believe that three years non-parole is not long enough for sexually assaulting a baby.
That's what we feel. We'll know soon enough if the DPP feels the same.