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Molesting Teacher Jailed After Appeal

A former north Queensland high school teacher has been jailed after a court overturned his suspended sentence for molesting a female student.
Steven Peter Quick, 29, of Varsity Lakes on the Gold Coast, originally avoided jail when Brisbane District Court Judge Ian Dearden sentenced him to a wholly suspended 18-month jail term and 12-month intensive correction order.
The Queensland Court of Appeal today overturned the sentence and substituted it with 18 months' jail, suspended after three months.
Quick had pleaded guilty in the Southport District Court in August this year to charges of indecent dealing and taking an indecent image of a child.
The 14-year-old girl had developed a crush on Quick, a schoolteacher in Collinsville, a mining town 270km northwest of Mackay.
Quick allowed the relationship to develop and visited the girl at her home during September school holidays in 2004.
The pair went for a drive and Quick later videotaped himself fondling and sucking the girl's breasts.
Quick continued to email and text message the girl until her father discovered some images of the pair on his daughter's computer.
Quick also sent her an SMS threatening to harm her if she didn't lie to the authorities about what he did.
In a two-to-one ruling, the Court of Appeal, headed by Chief Justice Paul de Jersey, set aside the intensive correction order and imposed the jail sentence.
Justice de Jersey found that Judge Dearden didn't take enough notice of the damage done to the victim, that he incorrectly regarded as relevant that she gave “some level of consent”, and that he did not give enough weight to Quick's threats to harm the girl.
The chief justice also found that Quick's remorse was only self-pitying and he lacked true insight into the damage he had done.
The state's Attorney-General had appealed the original sentence arguing it was too light and that Quick should have served actual jail time of up to six months for the offences.

www.news.com.au (17-11-2006)
Suzanne Klotz

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