South Coast man William Ruming sentenced to community service for possessing child abuse material

A South Coast NSW man who pleaded guilty to possessing child abuse material after his wife found screenshots of explicit messages and images involving young girls on his phone has avoided jail time.

William Ruming, 36, was sentenced to a 12-month intensive community corrections order in the Batemans Bay Local Court after pleading guilty to possessing child abuse material.

He was living in Surfside when the material was discovered by his wife in August 2021.

One of the group chats Ruming was allegedly part of was named Family Enthusiasts, while another was with a person using the alias the Pantie Man.

Police tender documents to the court show Ruming interacted with an unidentified person known as Dan Noname, who claimed he was sexually abusing a young girl.

The documents also detailed that Ruming’s wife discovered the messages on his phone when she picked it up to use it as a torch in their bedroom while he slept.

Court house sign.
Ruming pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing.(ABC News: Holly Tregenza)

During a hearing last month, Magistrate David O’Connor said Ruming could not avoid jail time unless he moved back to New South Wales from south-east Queensland.

He was granted bail on the condition that he moved in with a friend at Sanctuary Point on the South Coast NSW.

Since then, he has relocated to the South Coast.

Defense asks for community service

Defense lawyer Wayne Boom said the offenses were serious and “particularly distasteful from a public point of view”.

He urged the court to consider ordering his client to do a period of community service work.

Magistrate Doug Dick told the court during the sentencing hearing on Monday he had “no doubt” Ruming “got the message loud and clear”.

He ordered Ruming to complete 200 hours of community service and pay a $2,000 fine.

Ruming must also engage with frequent psychological and mental health assessments throughout his sentence.

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