Married teaching assistant, 50, jailed for having sex with 15-year-old schoolgirl

George Martin
Richard Perrin carried out the five-month relationship over lockdown. (PA)
Jailed: Richard Perrin had sex with a 15-year-old girl. (PA)

A married teaching assistant has been jailed for two years and eight months after having sex with a 15-year-old girl.

Richard Perrin, 50, was arrested in June and pleaded guilty to six counts of sexual activity with a child committed over a five-month period, including during the coronavirus lockdown.

Perrin also sent naked photographs of himself to the victim and was caught after a male relative spotted incriminating messages on his phone, Worcester Crown Court heard.

Police later recovered notes, written by the victim, hidden underneath the driver's seat in Perrin's car.

Prosecutor Tom Walkling told the court: "The mobile telephones [of Perrin and the victim] co-located on at least five occasions in May and June, indicating they had met up in secret.

"The defendant was arrested and he answered no comment to all questions in police interview."

WORCESTER, ENGLAND - AUGUST 28:  General view of Worcester Crown Court where six men and one woman are appearing after being charged for an acid attack on a 3-year-old on August 28, 2018 in Worcester, England. They appear charged with conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm over an acid attack on a three-year-old child on July 21 at Home Bargains on Shrub Hill Retail Park, Tallow Hill, Worcester. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)
Perrin was jailed for two years and eight months following a trial at Worcester Crown Court. (Getty)

Defence counsel Julia Needham, making submissions by video-link, said of Perrin: "He is a man who, but for this horrendous period, has been a constructive, useful and beneficial member of society."

Perrin, formerly of Ledbury, Herefordshire, and now listed in court documents as being of no fixed address, showed little emotion as he appeared in court for sentencing from HMP Hewell in north Worcestershire.

Read more: Teaching assistant guilty of sending topless picture to male student, 15

Passing sentence on Friday, the judge told Perrin the offences beggared belief.

"What you have done is deprive a young girl of her childhood," Recorder Sandeep Kainth said. "You knew what her age was. These offences are so serious that only a custodial sentence can suffice."

The judge accepted that Perrin had shown genuine remorse, adding: "I do not believe you will be back before the court when you are ultimately released.

"I sincerely hope you have learnt a salutary lesson from what can only be described as absolute and complete stupidity by you."