Rothbury indecent assault trial: Day four

An alleged victim of indecent assault has admitted lying on oath in a previous trial but says she did so because she couldn’t bring herself to tell the full extent of abuse she suffered.

The woman has accused Joseph Kinnear, 59, of East Newtown Cottages, Rothbury, of indecently assaulting her when she was 12.

Kinnear is being tried at Newcastle Crown Court for 14 counts of the offence dating back to between 1975-1982 when he was a teacher at Beaumont Middle School in Hexham and Dr Thomlinson’s Middle School, Rothbury.

The court had previously heard that Kinnear was convicted and jailed for similar offences in 2006.

And in cross-examination this afternoon a jury of nine women and three men heard that one of his alleged victims was also a complainant in the previous trial.

Defending, Mark Barlow, read out a transcript of her previous evidence.

At the time she said she had been kissed by Kinnear at a cottage after he had taken her home from school.

Asked if anything else had happened she said, no.

Mr Barlow said: “You were well aware of the importance of telling the truth.”

She replied: “Yes I was but I didn’t realise how much it would hurt until it came to it.”

Giving her evidence on Tuesday she said that Kinnear had kissed her and sexually touched her at school and in his car and had also removed her clothing on the bottom half and his jogging bottoms and laid on top of her.

Mr Barlow added: “Lying on oath as you did comes easy for you doesn’t it?”

She replied: “No. Why on earth would anybody want to put themselves and their family through a living hell about something like this?”

The court heard that the woman’s evidence in 2006 was different to that given this week.

But she said: “Because it was so many years ago, about 32, the times and dates and things were different in my head when I first gave evidence because I hadn’t had time to think about them all and because I didn’t want to.

“Since then I have had to think about it and I have been and am still having psychotherapy to help me cope with the fact that it wasn’t my fault.

“Every single detail of the abuse that took place is absolutely correct it is just the times and dates that are confusing.”

The trial continues.