Jury in Trial Of Portsmouth Teacher Discharged

The jury in the trial of a Hampshire assistant headteacher accused of performing a sex act near a sleeping boy during a Christmas party has been discharged.

Jurors trying Matthew Hill, 40, at Portsmouth Crown Court were unable to reach a verdict and a possible retrial will be listed at a later date, a court official said.

Hill was accused of outraging public decency at the Buckland play centre in Portsmouth in the early hours of December 23 2012.

The court heard he was working at the time as the assistant headteacher at Lyndhurst Junior School in the city, but was volunteering at the play centre for the event.

Prosecutor Iain Wicks said Hill was allegedly seen by site manager Nicola Andrews carrying out a sex act between 12in (30cm) and 18in (46cm) from a child's face.

But Mr Wicks said Hill denied the claim and sent Mrs Andrews a text message, saying: "I can't believe what's happening. I do not know what you think you saw but I swear I have done nothing wrong.''

The police were alerted and, when interviewed, Hill denied the allegation and said he was "upset and angry'' about it.

Hill, of Mallory Crescent, Fareham, Hampshire, also said he was not sexually interested in children and was only attracted to women of his own age.

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