Adam Johnson Trial: As It Happened
2 March 2016, 19:06
Adam Johnson has been found GUILTY of one charge of sexual activity with a child and NOT GUILTY of another.
The former Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson has been told he will received a 'substantial prison sentence' after he was found guilty of sexual activity with a besotted 15-year-old fan.
His teenage victim said she felt 'so broken' after her idol was found guilty of one count of sexual activity with a child at Bradford Crown Court and cleared of another.
Johnson, 28, was given bail by Judge Jonathan Rose, who warned him:
'You must understand that when you return here at the end of March you will receive a substantial prison sentence.''
Justifying giving him bail, the judge said:
'You can say goodbye to your daughter. A prison sentence will mean you will not see her for some time.''
Johnson showed no obvious emotion as the jury returned its verdicts. He had already admitted a less serious charge of sexual activity with the teenager and also grooming her over social media.
All the charges relate to an incident in the former Sunderland winger's Range Rover when he met up with the girl in County Durham on January 30 last year.
Update March 1st:
The jury in the trial of former Sunderland footballer, Adam Johnson, has been sent out to consider its verdict.
Johnson, 28, has already pleaded guilty to grooming a 15-year-old girl and one charge of sexual activity with the teenager.
This morning, Judge Jonathan Rose continued to sum up the evidence in the case, before concluding just before midday.
He reminded the jury of eight women and four men about what the player said under cross-examination in the witness box and, also, what his ex-girlfriend Stacey Flounders told the court.
Judge Rose's final comment to the jury was:
"When you retire, you must reach verdicts on which you are all agreed.
"I can only accept unanimous verdicts in this case. 12-0 is the only possible score.''
UPDATED 29th February
The judge in the trial of England footballer Adam Johnson has begun summing up the case.
The former Sunderland winger is on trial at Bradford Crown Court accused of two counts of sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl.
The 28-year-old pleaded guilty to charges of grooming and sexual activity with a child, involving kissing, on the first day the case was listed for trial.
Judge Jonathan Rose told the jury of eight women and four men:
"In February last year, a 15-year-old girl told police that she had met and had intimate relations with the defendant, a professional footballer with Sunderland Football Club.''
The two-week trial has heard that the girl was a "massive, massive Sunderland fan'' who was infatuated with Johnson.
The court's heard that after meeting at the football club, the pair exchanged phone numbers and sent and received 834 WhatsApp messages in little more than a month.
Johnson met the girl in his black Range Rover on January 17th last year and signed two Sunderland shirts for her.
The footballer admits kissing her during a second meeting on January 30th but denies that any further sexual activity took place.
Judge Rose told the jury that the defence's case is that the girl is a "proven liar who has made up the other allegations''.
"It is quite clear, say the defence, that (the girl) is lying.''
He said the defence claim Johnson is a "man to be believed'', who has suffered "irreparable damage'' to his footballing career and his relationship with his girlfriend and mother of his child, Stacey Flounders, as a result of his admissions.
Judge Rose said the prosecution's case is that Johnson, who has admitted being sexually attracted to the girl, is guilty.
"He admits he made contact with her and then met her intending to engage in sexual activity with her.
He admits that he kissed her.''
The judge said the prosecution's case is that Johnson "has lied to his girlfriend, to police and to the court''.
PICTURED ABOVE: Kate Blackwell QC who is leading the prosecution at the trial of Adam Johsnon
Johnson, of Castle Eden, County Durham, sat in the dock wearing a black suit and tie while Judge Rose summed up the evidence from witnesses.
The judge reminded the jury that Johnson had admitted lying on eight occasions.
He said: "The prosecution says these lies were told in an attempt to conceal Adam Johnson's guilt.''
But he said the defence case was that "such lies as he has told are merely the panicked response of a man who had done wrong by his family''.
Judge Rose told the jury it must not assume Johnson is guilty just because he has admitted to lying.
He said: "Lies alone cannot prove a case against Adam Johnson. You must consider all of the evidence in this case.''
The judge said the jury should also take into account the fact that Johnson was previously of good character and that he is now convicted of the two sexual offences to which he has admitted.
He said: "The fact that the defendant pleaded guilty to those two matters is not direct evidence that he committed the offences on this indictment.''
Judge Rose reviewed the evidence of witnesses in the case, including the girl and Johnson.
He told the jury it was up to the prosecution to prove Johnson's guilt.
The judge said he expected to conclude his summing up on Tuesday morning and said the jury would then retire to consider their verdicts.
The trial was adjourned until Tuesday.
UPDATED 25th February 2016
The girlfriend of England footballer Adam Johnson has told a jury that they have now split up and said he had admitted cheating on her with 'quite a few' women.
Stacey Flounders - who is the mother of Johnson's one-year-old daughter, Ayla - said the pair would remain friends, as she was asked about their relationship at the former Sunderland winger's trial at Bradford Crown Court.
Miss Flounders wiped away tears in the witness box as she described how the 28-year-old former Sunderland winger had told her 'everything' about kissing a 15-year-old girl when he returned from a police station after his arrest in March last year.
Asked if he talked about other things, she said:
'The other women that he cheated on me with.'
Miss Flounders was asked by Orlando Pownall QC, defending, if he named the women.
'Just one. He wouldn't tell me the other names.'
Asked how many there were, she said:
'Quite a few.'
The 26-year-old was asked by Mr Pownall, defending Johnson, about the future of their relationship.
'We're just going to remain friends.'
Earlier, Mr Pownall asked her why she decided to stay with the player after his arrest.
'Because he was honest with me and I knew he was telling the truth.
'We'd just had a daughter. I wanted us to be a family.'
UPDATED 23rd February:
Adam Johnson has told a court his world was 'turned upside down' when he was arrested for sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl.
Johnson said he 'panicked' and was 'in turmoil' during his police interview after his arrest in March last year.
The 28-year-old former Sunderland winger told Bradford Crown Court he admitted kissing the girl in his car but said he tried to 'play it down'.
Johnson has admitted grooming and passionately kissing the girl in his black Range Rover but denies two counts of further sexual activity.
He admitted that he did not always answer some police questions entirely truthfully.
'My world had got turned upside down and I was trying to play it down as much as I could.''
When asked by Orlando Pownall QC, defending, about what state he was in during his first interview, Johnson said:
'I was panicking. I had all these thoughts going through my mind about everything. To name a couple, my career, my family, I was in turmoil.'
Johnson said he was 'surprised'' that the teenage girl had told police that further sexual activity had taken place.
UPDATED 22nd February 5pm
Johnson's described his WhatsApp messages to the girl as "flirty'' and "inappropriate'', and said he was "ashamed'' about sending them.
He's been giving evidence at his trial at Bradford Crown Court.
"I'm ashamed that I did that and I know I shouldn't have been doing that.''
When asked how he feels now about the messages, he said: "Embarrassed. Awful. I shouldn't have ever done it.''
The footballer told the court he was attracted to the girl. He said the messages were his fault and wished he had put a stop to them.
"I was caught up in the texting and speaking to her like I was talking to any other person and I should have known better.''
Johnson said he knew it was a "possibility'' that he would be touching the girl sexually when they met in his car and said he wanted to do that.
He told the court: "That was stupidity from me and I really regret that.''
PICTURED: Footballer Adam Johnson (centre of group of three entering door) arrives with unidentified men at Bradford Crown Court for the start of the defence at his trial where he is accused of sexual activity with a child.
Describing the moment the pair kissed, Johnson said they chatted about football before the girl said she had come for her "thank you kiss''.
He said: "And then the kiss happened.''
Johnson told the court he wanted to kiss the girl and enjoyed it.
"I had all sorts of things going on in my head at the time. I was thinking: 'What am I doing? I've got so much to lose.'''
I wasn't thinking clearly how I should have been.''
Johnson, who gave evidence from the witness box wearing a red tie, white shirt and black suit, seemed emotional when he spoke about sending messages to the teenage girl at the same time as messaging his girlfriend, Stacey Flounders.
When asked about his feelings for Miss Flounders, he said: "I love her just as much as I always have.''
"I wasn't a good person. I should never have done that. I can't think of the words to describe how I feel about it.''
Johnson said he felt "stupid'' about kissing the girl but got "caught up'' in texting her afterwards.
"The thoughts that were going through my mind were 'what was I doing?', people I was letting down."
When asked why he requested a naked picture of the girl after she sent him a photograph of herself in a bikini, he said:
"That was just my natural reaction to the message.''
The trial was adjourned until tomorrow.
UPDATED 22nd February, 2pm
Adam Johnson has said he searched for the age of consent on the internet after a changing room discussion about laws in different countries.
The former Sunderland winger is on trial at Bradford Crown Court accused of sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl.
The court has heard that a Google search for ``legal age of consent'' was made on Johnson's phone four days after he met the girl in his car on January 30.
The footballer has admitted grooming and kissing the teenager but denies two counts of further sexual activity.
Johnson told the court he knew the age of consent when he asked the girl in December 2014 about when she turned 16. He said he asked the question during a conversation about drinking.
He said he searched the internet for the age of consent after a training session, but added:
"It had nothing to do with (her).
We were having a discussion in the dressing room about a programme that was on a couple of days ago about different ages and things like that.
There are a lot of players in our team from all sorts of countries and we were having a discussion about laws and ages and things in different parts of the world.''
ABOVE: Footballer Adam Johnson (centre) arrives with unidentified men at Bradford Crown Court for the start of the defence at his trial where he is accused of sexual activity with a child.
UPDATED 22nd February 2016, 1pm
Former Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson's taken to the witness box for the first time.
The 28 year old denies two charges of sexual activity with a child under 16.
He has admitted one similar charge and one of grooming, for which he will be sentenced after the trial.
In the statement read out at Bradford Crown Court, Johnson said:
"I accept the stupidity of my actions. I have no excuse. I was aware by then of her age."
I recognise my behaviour was wholly unacceptable", he said, adding that he apologised "wholeheartedly and unreservedly"
Johnson has admitted kissing the girl, who can not be named for legal reasons, and exchanging messages with her on social media, but insists it went no further.
Following his statement, Johnson took to the stand where he was quizzed on his career as a footballer and his relationship with his girlfriend.
Johnson said that at the time of the alleged offences last January his relationship with his partner "wasn't good" and that she was suspicious about who he was messaging.
"It was all my fault," he told the court.
PICTURED: Footballer Adam Johnson (right) arrives with an unidentified man at Bradford Crown Court for the start of the defence at his trial where he is accused of sexual activity with a child.
UPDATED 19th February 2016, 3PM
Former Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson was "a little bit shaky'' after he was arrested at his home following allegations made by a 15-year-old girl, the arresting officer has told a jury.
Detective Constable Kimberley Walton, of Durham Police, said she took the footballer to a games room in his home in Castle Eden, County Durham, to arrest him, leaving his partner, Stacey Flounders, sitting on the stairs.
She agreed that after his arrest, Johnson said the teenager's name and added: "I just gave her a couple of shirts.''
The officer told the jury:
"At the time of the caution and arrest of Adam Johnson he was stood by a bar area.
He had to hold on to it and he became a little bit shaky.''
The officer said the footballer then asked if he could see Miss Flounders.
Det Con Walton agreed that Johnson's partner said to him: "Who is she?''
The officer also agreed that he replied: "It's (the girl's name). I just gave her a couple of shirts.''
The court heard that Miss Flounders said: "How old is she?''
And Johnson replied: `"Well, she said she was 16.''
The officer told the jury how the player was allowed to get changed before he was taken to a police station.
Det Con Walton said she first became aware of the allegations when the girl and her mother came into a County Durham police station to ask for advice.
UPDATED 19TH FEBRUARY, 1.15PM
The jury in the trial of footballer Adam Johnson has been shown a photograph of the England player's "groin area''.
Jury members were handed a series of images during the evidence of forensic computer expert Paul Hunton at Bradford Crown Court.
Prosecutor Kate Blackwell QC told the jury the pictures had been downloaded from Johnson's iPhone.
She said they were a ``series of images of the defendant himself and one separate photograph of his groin area''.
The jury of eight women and four men has heard that the 28-year-old former Sunderland winger has admitted kissing a 15-year-old girl in his Range Rover on January 30.
Johnson has also admitted grooming the girl but denies that more serious sexual conduct took place between the pair in his car.
Dr Hunton told the jury that a Google search for "legal age of consent'' was made on Johnson's phone four days after he met the girl on January 30.
He described how he examined an iPhone 6 from Johnson's house and verified that a series of web pages were accessed on February 3 last year.
Dr Hunton said the Google search for "legal age of consent'' was followed by another web address which appeared to show the user had clicked on a result which took him to the www.mirror.co.uk website.
He said the search result clicked on appeared to be ``What is the age of consent around the world? From Angola at 12 to Bahrain at 21.''
Johnson sat in the dock wearing a blue suit, white shirt and grey tie, listening to Dr Hunton.
The player has pleaded guilty to one count of grooming the teenager and another of sexual activity with a child.
He denies two further counts of sexual activity with a child.
UPDATED 18th FEBRUARY, 3.05pm
A court's heard former Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson would be a "bit of a paedophile'' for going after a 15-year-old girl.
A teenager told the jury she did not at first believe her friend's claims she had had a sexual encounter with the former Sunderland and England star, who has admitted sexual activity with the 15-year-old girl in his black Range Rover.
But the girl told Bradford Crown Court her friend then showed her "20 times'' messages on her phone from the 28-year-old father of one.
The girl, who cannot be identified because of her age said: "At first I thought, 'It's definitely not Adam Johnson, then...''
Kate Blackwell QC, prosecuting, asked the witness, giving evidence via a video link: "Why did you not think it was Adam Johnson?''
The girl replied:
"Cos he's, however old he is. And why would he? He's a bit of a paedophile if he's going for a 15...kids and that.''
Johnson has pleaded guilty to grooming the girl aged 15, between December 30th, 2014 and February 26th, 2015, and sexual activity with her, involving kissing on January 30th, last year.
But the footballer, who has been capped 12 times for his country, is on trial after denying two further counts of sexual activity with a child.
ABOVE: England footballer Adam Johnson, 28, leaves Bradford Crown Court, Bradford, where he has pleaded guilty to grooming and sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl on the first day of his trial.
The youngster, a football fan, had an "enormous crush on him'' but he "abused his position in society'' after the two began exchanging messages on social media, it is alleged.
They initially met up so he could personally sign football shirts for the girl, the court heard.
After this first meeting the two joked in their messages about whether Johnson deserved a "thank you kiss'' and they met again, when the sexual activity is alleged to have taken place.
The witness agreed that the messages between her friend and Johnson could be described as "flirting'', adding:
"He must have known she was not 16. He had said 'Oh well, when are you going to be 16?' And he said 'Oh, that's ages away'.''
The court heard that Johnson and the girl began communicating on Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, and the footballer allegedly set up a second Snapchat account so his girlfriend would not discover his activities.
But after the girl showed her friends the messages and discussed it with them, the news spread like wildfire on Facebook and around her school.
PICTURED: Adam Johnson arriving at Bradford Corwn Court where he's on trial accused of two counts of sexual activity with a child.
She eventually told her parents and police were called in.
A second friend of the girl also gave evidence.
She said the girl told her while they were in the school dinner hall of her second meeting with Johnson in his car and alleged sexual activity, which Johnson denies, which began with "kissing with tongues''.
The witness said her friend told her a third encounter was arranged after Johnson texted her while she was at school, asking:
"She told us that she was going to have sex and sleep with him in his car."
But when her friend turned up, Johnson was not there and he messaged her to say he could not meet her because he did not have an excuse to leave the house to give his girlfriend, Stacey Flounders.
Her friend was "not very happy with him'', the jury heard.
"She had come over, she was mad at the fact that he had messed her about.
She had come over to see Adam and then he did not show up. So she was mad at him.
That was the same night she told her mam and dad.''
The jury heard that that night boys in the girls' year at school found out after the girls "let it out'', and the news was on a group chat on Facebook.
The witness said her friend was "pretty distraught'' and crying because the news was out.
He denies two counts of sexual activity with a child. The trial continue.
UPDATED 17th February, 1:30pm
A teenage girl has told a jury how her best friend was "excited'' after she had a sexual encounter with England footballer Adam Johnson in his car.
Johnson's trial was shown a video-recorded police interview in which the teenager described how she was with her friend before she went to meet the 28-year-old former Sunderland winger in his Range Rover in January last year.
Johnson has admitted grooming the girl's friend and has pleaded guilty to sexual activity with the same girl, who was 15 at the time, relating to kissing in his car.
But the footballer denies two further charges of sexual activity with the same girl, which prosecutors have described as "more serious''.
In the police interview played to the jury at Bradford Crown Court, the teenager said she met her friend again after she got out of Johnson's car.
She told the officer her friend was "more excited - not excited for something, just excited - in a good mood, really''.
The teenager said:
"I asked her if anything had happened as I'd seen messages before asking for a bit of a feel.''
She then explained how her friend described a sex act that had allegedly taken place between her and Johnson.
"She seemed excited about it at first but she started to realise what she'd done because he had a girlfriend."
The girl's friend has already told the court how Johnson was her favourite player and she started communicating with him over WhatsApp in December 2014.
She said she met up with Johnson twice - on January 17th and 30th last year.
This girl has told the jury that she kissed the player on the second occasion and also described more serious sexual activity.
In her police interview, her best friend told the officer how, at first, she did not believe her friend "because he's a footballer, he's famous and she's only 15''.
But she explained how she changed her mind after a seeing a message Johnson sent to her friend which said: "Just wanted to get your pants off''.
The girl told the officer: "That's why I know something had happened between them for definite."
Giving live evidence over a video-link in court, the girl told the jury:
"She (her friend) said that they talked on Snapchat and he'd asked her to send a naked picture and that's all I can remember about it.''
The girl said this after she was asked by Kate Blackwell QC, prosecuting, to tell the court about additional matters she had told police last week.
She also described how she told officers that her friend had told her about more serious sexual activity and she had not told police about this earlier.
The girl said:
"She told me not to say anything.''
She told me that she'd been texting him before she went away and he offered to meet her for money.''
The trial continues.
UPDATED 16th February 2016, 1pm
A teenage girl has told a jury how she was no longer trying to protect England footballer Adam Johnson following a sexual encounter in his car because he made her out to be a liar.
The girl, now 16, has told Bradford Crown Court about sex acts that allegedly took place in the former Sunderland winger's Range Rover when she was 15 years old.
She has described how she did not mention some of the more serious activity at first because she was trying to protect the player.
BELOW: England footballer Adam Johnson, 28, arrives with partner Stacey Flounders at Bradford Crown Court, where he's on trial accused of sexual activity with a child
On Tuesday, she was asked by Orlando Pownall QC, defending Johnson, whether she was still trying to protect the 28-year-old.
Appearing in court by video-link, the girl became upset and tearful as she said:
"No, because he did nothing to protect me and he made me out to be a liar.''
Johnson, of Castle Eden, Co Durham, has admitted one charge of sexual activity with a child in relation to the incident in the Range Rover on January 30, last year.
He has also pleaded guilty to grooming the girl.
But he denies two further counts of sexual activity with a child relating to the same incident which prosecutors have described as "more serious''.
Speaking through tears for much of her exchange with Mr Pownall, the girl claimed she had been "bigging herself up'' with some messages to friends on social media.
The teenager said:
"I was trying to big myself up as any 15-year-old girl would.
When you idolise someone and that happens to you, you're not thinking at the time.''
The girl wiped away tears as she told the jury she never thought she would end up explaining herself in court.
Mr Pownall again asked the girl whether she was just trying to protect herself.
"I wasn't protecting myself. It made no difference to me whether they knew about me and Adam Johnson. It was him who was going to suffer for it.''
The girl got more upset and she continued to insist she never wanted to get Johnson into trouble.
She said: "I didn't want that to happen to him. I saw myself as playing a part in it as well, I thought I'd done wrong too.''
The girl began sobbing again and asked for a break.
The girl told the court she made a video on her phone when she was in the car with Johnson but it only recorded an image of the dashboard.
She said she did this to prove to people that she had met the footballer.
The teenager said: "I was trying to brag about it and show off about it. How many teenagers can say that's happened to them?''
The girl told the court:
"I thought I was big and I thought I was clever.
I feel so stupid now for not seeing but I didn't see it at the time.''
Mr Pownall asked the girl about the messages exchanged between her and Johnson in December 2014, before they first met in his car.
The teenager said she found some of the messages "a bit creepy''.
Asked to clarify, she said: "I thought that when I told him my age he would have backed off. Who just asks for a random fan's number?''
Later, the girl told the jury: "Someone texting a 15-year-old girl - they're not completely normal.''
UPDATED 15th February 2016
Johnson's trial has resumed, with the court hearing evidence from 4 witnesses, including his alleged victim.
The teenager told police how she met up with him for a "thank you kiss and more" after he signed football shirts for her.
The girl then described to the officer further sexual activity between the pair.
Later in the interview, the police officer asked the girl what Johnson knew about her.
She said he knew how old she was and her date of birth.
She said: "He asked me when I was 16.''
Asked how she felt, the girl said: "As much as I expected it to happen, I was a bit shocked it had. I sort of knew I had done something wrong."
She then said:
"It wasn't that I didn't want it or anything. I just knew it was wrong. I'm not one for being able to hold guilt."
28 year old Johnson denies two counts of sexual activity with a child. The trial continues.
Updated: 12th February 2016
Opening Johnson's trial, prosecutor Kate Blackwell QC said:
"It is the crown's case that what has brought the defendant to this courtroom is a sexual desire for (the girl), an excessive arrogance and an unwarranted level of expectation.
He has abused his revered position in society and, having met (her), this 15-year-old girl, at Sunderland Football Club and later on social media, and knowing that she looked up to him, made a conscious decision to act in a way that he knew was both morally and legally wrong.''
Miss Blackwell told Bradford Crown Court that Johnson played for his country 'wearing the England shirt with pride'.
She said: 'His is the success story that many young people can only dream of.'
The prosecutor said the girl involved was 15 in December 2014, a time when Johnson lived with his partner, Stacey Flounders, who was then pregnant with their daughter, in Castle Eden, County Durham.
Miss Blackwell said:
"Her (the girl's) real passion was Sunderland Football Club.
She was a season ticket holder and rarely missed a home game and her favourite player was Adam Johnson.
After matches, she would hang around waiting for a glimpse of him, wanting to get a photograph, often sporting a Sunderland shirt with Johnson's name emblazoned across the back."
Former Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson (centre), 28, arrives with partner Stacey Flounders at Bradford Crown Court, where he's on trial accused of sexual activity with a child.
UPDATED 12th February 2016, 6am
Former Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson goes on trial accused of sexual activity with a child.
The 28-year-old winger pleaded guilty to grooming and sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl on Wednesday.
Sunderland announced his contract had been terminated on Thursday in a statement released just hours after his boot sponsor Adidas announced they had ended his deal.
The statement read:
"In light of Adam Johnson's guilty pleas, the club has today terminated his contract with immediate effect.
The club will make no further comment."
The footballer, who has been capped 12 times for his country, has denied two further counts of sexual activity with a child and his trial on these charges is due to begin at Bradford Crown Court.
Judge Jonathan Rose told jurors that Johnson had already pleaded guilty to two charges when the defendant appeared in court earlier in the week.
ABOVE: Adam Johnson leaves Bradford Crown Court
The grooming charge he has admitted relates to a period between December 30 2014 and February 26th 2015.
He also admitted sexual activity on January 30, 2015 which involved kissing and touching the youngster's body.
The defendant, from Castle Eden, County Durham, is being represented by Mr Orlando Pownall QC.