Saturday, June 30, 2018

Teacher guilty of sexually-assaulting student

High emotions broke out in Superior Court Friday as teacher Shawn Oakes was pronounced guilty of sexually assaulting a then-15-year-old student in 2015.

With the words barely out of Justice Catrina Braid’s mouth, Oakes’s mother began sobbing loudly and another family member shouted that the verdict was a “joke.”

Both Braid and Oakes’s victim – now 18 – and his parents quickly left the court temporarily as the room, packed with more than 40 Oakes supporters, dissolved into weeping and disbelief.

The judge said she fully believed the testimony of the victim who said Oakes, 38, was his favourite teacher and invited him out for coffee. The two stopped by Oakes’s home and the teen was given a tour of the house. In the basement, Oakes’s flirting turned to sexual advances and he performed fellatio on the boy who declined to reciprocate and eventually asked him to stop.

The teen described the acts as consensual to police and was concerned about getting the teacher into trouble.

In her verdict, Braid systematically dismissed almost every defence argument that had been put forward and expressed particular concerns about the testimony of Oakes’s brother, who said the assault couldn’t have happened because he was at the house at that time and met the student.

“When Derrick (Oakes) testified he wasn’t surprised to see Shawn alone in the presence of a male student in the house and ... it didn’t trouble him, I found it a shocking response,” said Braid.

“Common sense tells me Derrick should have been concerned or at the least surprised.”  (more...)


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