Teacher Sean Aldridge guilty of abusing four Warblington School girls
A TEACHER has been found guilty of ruthlessly exploiting his position of power after having clandestine sexual encounters with girl pupils in his office and washroom before attempting to silence them.
Paedophile PE teacher Sean Aldridge, 37, was branded ‘fantastic’ and a ‘shining light’ to pupils and staff but it was all part of his act as he went about his sordid business of having sex with the girls aged 13 to 16 at Warblington School, Havant, between 2006-2012.
After nearly three weeks in the dock, Aldridge, of Edmund Road, Southsea, was found guilty of 24 counts of sexual activity with a child and a charge of causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity at Portsmouth Crown Court.
The ‘heartthrob’ teacher, dressed immaculately in a suit throughout the trial, hanged his head after the first 16 unanimous verdicts were returned. He was then made to wait as jurors considered the remaining charges before returning a further nine majority verdicts after a day of deliberations.
Wails erupted from the public gallery from his disbelieving supporters who had been at the trial as the verdicts were returned.
When asked by The News whether he would appeal the verdicts outside court, Aldridge did not comment before delivering an exasperated shrug.
The teacher had attempted to paint a picture of being the victim of a witch-hunt by the girls who ‘could have got their heads together’.
But the sheer weight of accounts by the girls, who even by Aldridge’s account had no axe to grind, revealed a more disturbing truth.
A gluttony of sexual escapades when no one was about in his office and the PE washroom were fully exploited for his selfish ends at the immature victims’ expense, with two of the girls’ virginity cruelly taken from them by a man who knew better.
Aldridge even impregnated one girl before she had a miscarriage. During the abuse his first thought was for himself. ‘I could go to prison for this,’ he told her, casting a mental scar on her first sexual experience.
He groomed the girls so well with his affection and messages - including ‘I love you’ - they fell for his spiel.
All this behind the back of his long suffering partner, who he had two children with. His fling with one of the girls happened around the time he went on paternity leave for his new born baby.
Warblington School, which carried out an investigation into Aldridge’s conduct with a pupil on a previous occasion, promoted him to assistant headteacher and head of safeguarding. Even they were taken in by him.
Aldridge was previously investigated by police in 2011/12.
He thought he had the trust of the girls to keep his secrets locked away but years later, as they realised they had been groomed, the truth was finally exposed.
Aldridge confided to one of his victims he could go to prison. He will now find out for how long on Monday at Portsmouth Crown Court.
He was granted unconditional bail but had to surrender his passport.
A decision on the remaining two counts of sexual activity with a child will be made on Monday after jurors failed to reach verdicts and were discharged.