Former Cornwall teacher in court on sex case
A former teacher convicted on sex-related charges arising from a relationship with a 13-year-old student is expected to be sentenced in October.
Jennifer Dorland appeared for a pre-sentencing hearing in court on Friday.
Crown attorney Jennifer Burke argued she should serve 15 months.
Dorland was convicted in December 2007 as a result of a relationship with the former student which culminated in a September 2004 encounter that included touching each others' genitals.
Citing a ream of previous sex-abuse sentences against other teachers, Burke noted that not one of them escaped incarceration.
"It is . . . a severe breach of trust," Burke told Justice Julie-Ann Parfett. "(Abuse) affects all of us, because when we send a child to school, we expect he'll be well looked after."
The aftershocks of Dorland's actions resulted in major emotional turmoil for the boy, Burke said, citing the family's victim impact statements.
After Dorland ended her relationship with the student and began another with her current husband, the boy went into a depression.
"He felt stupid, taken advantage of," Burke said. Eventually, as his obsession turned to jealousy and self hatred, he began self mutilation, including sticking needles into himself.
He also faced negative reactions from students when they found out he was involved with a teacher.
Further relationships with girls also became strained and his grades suffered, including failing a math course.
The defence's expert witness, Dr. John Paul Fedoroff, a psychiatrist specializing in sexually deviant behaviours, assessed Dorland last February.
Fedoroff concluded that Dorland suffers from a dependency disorder, which requires her to excessively please other people to boost what he called her "extremely low self-esteem."
Fedoroff explained that Dorland's primary interest in the boy was not due to a sexual desire.
Burke, however, urged Parfett to discount Fedoroff's testimony.
Dorland's lawyer, Vanora Simpson, requested that her client receive a sentence to be served under house arrest.
Parfett said she would set a sentencing date in October on Sept. 18.
With files from The Canadian Press and the Cornwall Standard-Freeholder