Former Skipton teacher admits sex charges against teen

Craven Herald: Gareth Aspey Gareth Aspey

A former science teacher at Skipton Girls’ High School has pleaded guilty to three charges of engaging in sexual activity with a teenage girl while in a position of trust.

Gareth David Aspey, 29, admitted the offences when he made his first appearance before a judge at Bradford Crown Court last Wednesday.

The charges relate to incidents in December 2012 as well as March and July last year.

Barrister Clare Ashcroft, for Aspey, said he had now lost his good character and his teaching career was in tatters.

Miss Ashcroft asked for Apsey’s sentence hearing to be adjourned for eight weeks for a full assessment of her client to take place.

She indicated that he had previously been diagnosed with cancer and had suffered from mental health difficulties.

Judge Neil Davey QC said Aspey, of Alkincoats Road, Colne, would be sentenced on May 7 following the preparation of a pre-sentence report which would provide accurate and up-to-date information about his personal circumstances.

The judge warned Aspey not to draw any conclusions from the fact that he was adjourning sentence for the report and renewing his conditional bail.

“You must understand, as I gather from your counsel Miss Ashcroft you do, that all sentencing options, including one of imprisonment, remain open,” the judge told Aspey.

At Aspey’s previous hearing before Skipton Magistrates Court last month it was said that he had worked at the school since September 2008, but had resigned last year.

Aspey’s bail conditions prevent him from contacting the complainant in the case, who cannot be identified for legal reasons.

He is also prohibited from contacting any current or former pupils of the school who are under 18, entering the school or having unsupervised contact with any female under 18.

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