[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Monday, 15 August 2005, 12:37 GMT 13:37 UK
Teacher jailed for seducing boy
Hannah Grice
Grice was ordered to register as a sex offender for 10 years
A married primary school teacher has been jailed for 15 months for having a sexual relationship with a teenage boy.

Hannah Grice, 32, had pleaded guilty to two counts of indecent assault on the boy, when he was aged 14 and 15.

Sentencing her at Stafford Crown Court, Judge John Shand told the mother-of-two from Cannock, Staffordshire, she had abused her position of trust.

"Cases such as this are made worse by the fact that you were a member of the teaching profession," he told Grice.

What opportunity was there for three or four times a week?
Mike Grice

She was also ordered to register as a sex offender for 10 years.

Simon Rippon, prosecuting, told the court how Grice's relationship with the teenager grew after he developed a "schoolboy crush" on her in March 2003.

Mr Rippon said they progressed from hugging and kissing to sex at the home she shared with her husband Mike and their two daughters.

The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, kept in touch with Grice by text message and e-mail and said this took place up to four times a week until May 2004, the court was told.

'Deep regret'

But the relationship eventually became public, confirming "widely-held suspicions", and Grice was arrested the following month.

Stephen Bayley, defending, argued that his client should receive a suspended sentence and told the court Grice apologised for her behaviour.

He said she had moved house, resigned from her teaching post in Etchington, Staffordshire, and felt "constant and deep regret".

Speaking outside the court, the victim's mother said: "Prison's the best place for her. She was actively pursuing my son.

"This was the biggest breach of trust imaginable."

'Schoolboy fantasies'

But Grice's husband said he would be waiting for his wife when she was released.

"I stood at the altar with my wife and said, 'In sickness and in health and for better or for worse'. I will stand by those vows I took," said Mr Grice, 34.

The IT consultant and his father-in-law Trevor Pyke, 61, also questioned the basis for the prosecution.

Both dismissed the boy's allegations as "schoolboy fantasies" and criticised the fact that the only evidence in the case was from him.

"What opportunity was there for three or four times a week?" asked Mr Grice.

He added: "The difficult thing for me has been the effect it has had on my children.

"I'm a family man and the most difficult thing for me is going back to explain to my daughters, one of whose birthdays is next week... why her mum is not going to be there."

Jailed teacher's family scuffle with press outside court

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific