Female teacher jailed after sexual relationship with 15-year-old boy

A female teacher who had a "full-blown sexual relationship" with a 15-year-old schoolboy has been jailed for 16 months.

Alice McBrearty, 23, admitted having a four-month fling earlier this year with a pupil she taught at an east London school.

Snaresbrook Crown Court heard how McBrearty kissed the youngster in a classroom, took him to an Ibis hotel for sex, and performed sex acts on him in an empty garage and in her car.

She also took the teenager to her parents’ home in Wanstead Park, east London, where she performed sex acts on him and had sex.

Undated Metropolitan Police handout picture of teacher Alice McBrearty, 23, who has been jailed for a total of 16 months at Snaresbrook Crown Court in London after pleading guilty at an earlier hearing to seven counts of sexual activity with a child while in a position of trust. Picture: PA

McBrearty, who pleaded guilty to seven counts of sexual activity with a child while in a position of trust at an earlier hearing, put her head in her hands and sobbed in the dock as Judge Sheelagh Canavan sentenced her on Friday.

Jailing her for a total of 16 months, the judge described McBrearty as a "bright, intelligent and gifted young woman, who knew right from wrong," but said she had committed the "grossest breach of trust".

"You engaged in a full-blown sexual relationship with a 15-year-old child.

"I accept he was consenting - what 15-year-old schoolboy would turn down such an attractive offer?" she said.

"I accept you truly believed this was a great romance, you were in love with him and vice versa, and that age didn’t matter. But it did," the judge continued.

"You were supposed to keep him safe, to help him make the right decisions.

"Instead, you helped him make all the wrong ones."

The court heard the relationship began when McBrearty sent the boy, who cannot be identified because he is a victim of a sexual offence, a friend request on social media.

Prosecutor Lisa Matthews said he "felt special", adding: "She started to take him out to parks, including the Olympic Park, they went on strolls and out for meals.

"He appeared to be besotted with her."

The court heard the pair had seven sexual encounters, starting when McBrearty took the youngster to her home.

On other occasions she booked a hotel room for sex and performed sex acts in a garage and her car.

She also kissed her pupil in a classroom at the school.

The court heard the relationship came to an end when the victim’s father contacted police.

Emma Shafton, defending, said: "This is a young lady who has had a spectacular fall from grace - university educated, comes from a respectable family - she has been utterly disgraced by this."

She told the judge her client "is not sexually attracted to children", but added: "She will of course be branded a paedophile for the rest of her life. She is a sex offender."

The barrister added: "She has not been able to get a decent job that matches her qualifications. She has of course resigned from the teaching profession. She has been working on a zero-hours contract delivering parcels to Amazon."

Speaking after the sentencing, Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) lawyer Zarah Dickinson said: "She conducted a sexual relationship for months with a boy despite knowing he was under-age and she was committing a serious crime.

"She groomed him on social media and bought him gifts before having sex with him in her home, at a hotel and in her car.

"We would like to thank the victim for coming forward and for supporting this prosecution during what has been a difficult time for him and his family."

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