His alleged victim now lives in Melbourne and was not informed by the police or court that Harkins would be travelling to Victoria.
A photo posted on social media by Morrison shows Harkins playing saxophone alongside him during the gig, which was recorded live with plans to release it as an album.
Harkins, originally from Maine in the United States, pleaded not guilty to the charges at an arraignment hearing in Mount Gambier on October 15.
On the same day, he signed an adjusted bail agreement giving him permission to travel to Victoria between October 18 and 19. His residence during the trip was listed as the YHA hostel in North Melbourne.
Harkins was instructed to report to Mount Gambier police station 24 hours after his return.
The application to vary Harkins’ bail was not opposed by police, according to a transcript of the court proceeding.
Harkins’ lawyer was contacted for comment.
Morrison said it would be inappropriate to make any comment about Harkins while he faced criminal charges.
“In addition, the wellbeing (and privacy) of all our students is our primary concern and I don’t feel (particularly the survivor) needs to be reading in the paper comments from me about how we looked after her,” he said in an email written while on tour in Brazil.
On the academy’s website, Morrison explains that one of the reasons for setting up the school in Mount Gambier was to create a community among students who don’t have the distractions of a big city.
“It’s kind of like when you go to band camp – everybody there is into the music and when you’re not actually in class, you’re still with your colleagues who are passionate about jazz,” he says on the academy’s website.
“Students at the JM Academy will benefit from living in close proximity to each other and when class ends for the day, instead of all going your separate ways, they can hang out together and maintain the ‘jazz’ atmosphere.”
The academy was opened in 2015 with the help of $500,000 grant from the South Australian state government. It is affiliated with the University of South Australia, which enrols the students. Morrison is the head of school and his wife, Judi, is the executive director.
In 2017, the academy pledged to identify ways to prevent and respond to sexual harassment and sexual assault after separate allegations were raised against a staff member.
“The academy has policies dealing with sexual assault and sexual harassment that have been approved by UniSA,” Morrison said.
As of next year, the academy will no longer accept enrolments for its three-year bachelor of music. One-year diploma and honours courses will still be offered. Morrison said this was due to a change in federal funding arrangements.
A University of South Australia spokesperson said it would be inappropriate to comment on the matter while it was before the courts.
“The University of South Australia takes the safety and wellbeing of every one of its students and staff very seriously and has comprehensive policies and support services in relation to this,” the spokesperson said.
A trial has been set for March 23, 2020.
Tom Cowie is a journalist at The Age covering general news.