A JURY in the trial of an ex-assistant headteacher accused of performing an indecent act in front of sleeping children at a Christmas party and sleepover has been discharged.
Matthew Hill, 40, who taught at Lyndhurst Junior School in Crofton Road, North End, Portsmouth, before his arrest is accused of performing the act during his unconnected volunteer work.
He was one of four adults supervising about 18 children aged between seven and 14 on the night of the alleged incident at Buckland Park Play Centre in Malins Road, Buckland. Portsmouth.
Hill, of Mallory Crescent, Fareham, who has no previous convictions, denies outraging public decency by committing an act of a lewd, obscene and disgusting nature in the early hours while the children were asleep.
He is alleged to have committed the offence in the early hours of December 23, 2012.
Judge Richard Price discharged a 12-strong jury five hours and 28 minutes after they started their deliberations at Portsmouth Crown Court.
A retrial is to be held on a date to be set.
Hill, who was dismissed from his post at Lyndhurst School following his arrest, was released on bail.