Teacher who slept with 16 year-old spared jail

A teacher has been spared jail for sleeping with a 16-year-old pupil after judge accepted that she wore short skirts and low tops and “threw herself at him”.
Chelmsford Crown Court had been told that Chesney, who taught literature at a school in Burnham on Crouch, had unprotected sex with the 16 year-old

1:59PM GMT 07 Feb 2012

Judge Christopher Ball QC instead imposed a suspended sentence on 31-year-old Andrew Chesney.

Chelmsford Crown Court had been told that Chesney, who taught literature at a school in Burnham on Crouch, had unprotected sex with the 16 year-old.

However, Judge Ball said he had not “preyed” on girls. He said Chesney had been targeted by the girl in question who had effectively flaunted herself and had thrown herself at him from the moment he joined the school.

Imposing 12 months jail suspended for two years and 300 hours unpaid work, he said there were “extraordinary circumstances” which enabled him to take the case “out of the guidelines.”

Chesney, of Great Smials, South Woodham Ferrers, who admitted sexual activity with a child while in a position of trust, was also placed on the sex offenders register and ordered to pay £1,000 costs.

But Judge Ball said the girl had worn “short skirts and low tops” and that she had admitted in her statement that she “fancied” Chesney immediately and she was 16 which meant “in law she was perfectly entitled to choose sexually.”

She said in her statement: “From the moment he joined the staff I fancied him and stayed for extra lessons he generally gave,” said the judge, adding: “She was effectively flaunting herself and throwing herself at you.

“That’s something teachers have to deal with and you were but a beginner, you succumbed to sexual interest of a young women and took the opportunity over a short period of time and number of occasions for sexual gratification,” he said.

Richard Scott, prosecuting, said Chesney began work at the school in 2009 becoming an English teacher.

He continued : “The girl found him attractive and conceded a degree of flirtation before the relationship flourished.

“During the Spring term of 2010 things began to escalate – he gave her a lift home from school and en route they stopped in a field and had unprotected sex.

“He also sent text messages urging her not to get ‘obsessed’ and said he would stop texting if things ‘got too serious.’

“After it was confirmed she wasn’t pregnant, they drove to Bradwell on Sea where he touched and kissed her breasts, before further texts and she went on to perform oral sex on him.”

Arrested in January last year, a decision was taken in September to charge him. He was of previous good character.

Chesney’s counsel, Emma Davenport, told the court that the incident occurred during a “temporary split” in the run-up to Chesney’s wedding at a time when he was engaged.

She said that Chesney, who was of previous good character now worked for the same confectionary distribution company that his wife worked for.

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