School care worker downloaded more than 4000 indecent images

A school care worker downloaded more than 4,000 indecent images of children from the internet. Peter John Taylor, who worked at The Grange School, in Knossington, near Oakham, was given a suspended jail sentence.

The 46-year-old pleaded guilty to eight counts of making indecent images of youngsters, by downloading them, between 2002 and 2009.

Leicester Crown Court was told that Taylor was employed at the residential boys school, which offers a specialist educational regime for pupils with behavioural difficulties.

Alan Murphy, prosecuting, said police launched an inquiry when Taylor was arrested and there was no suggestion he acted inappropriately towards any pupils.
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On December 22, 2009, police visited Taylor’s home at Upper Brooks, Exton, near Oakham, and recovered four computers.

Three computers were found to contain indecent images of children.

There were 3,405 images in the least serious category at level one, 188 images at level two, 231 at level three and 342 at level four.

In interview, Taylor said he was formerly a pupil at The Grange, in Knossington, where he spent three years.

He later became an odd-job man there and went on to gain an NVQ qualification in social work before being appointed as a carer.

Taylor admitted having a sexual interest in children, primarily boys from the age of 13, but only as far as the images were concerned.

Mr Murphy said: “The police are satisfied nothing was happening to any of the children at the school.

“Taylor said it (viewing the images) was a separate part of his life and there’s no evidence of any form of distribution.”

Christopher Jeyes, in mitigation, said: “Eighty per cent of the images are at level one. Regarding his employment, there’s never been any suggestion he has abused any of the children.

“He’s lost his job, his home and has incurred debt as a result of the loss of his employment.”

Taylor was sentenced to a four- month jail sentence, suspended for two years, with supervision, and a requirement to undergo a sex offender programme.

Judge Michael Pert QC said the sentencing guidelines indicated a much lesser sentence was appropriate in Taylor’s case.

Judge Pert added: “Sending you to prison for a couple of weeks or months, with no programme, doesn’t serve the public as well as you undergoing a sexual offender programme.”

He banned Taylor from working with children for life.

He will also have to enlist on a sex offender register for seven years.

Judge Pert ordered Taylor’s computers to be seized and destroyed.

Mr Steve Watt, principal at The Grange School, said after the case: “The school can confirm that Mr Taylor is no longer an employee at the school and was immediately suspended when the school was informed that the police had launched an investigation following his arrest.

“Mr Taylor was suspended from all his duties in December 2009 and did not return to the school.

“We can confirm that the authorities having completed their investigations have concluded that no offence relating to children at the school or any school property had taken place.

“Throughout this period, the school enjoyed an Ofsted inspection of our education and care provision.

“Ofsted confirmed the outstanding opportunities we offer to our pupils both within formal education and especially in how we care for each young person.”