A Chorley Scout leader has appeared in court charged with sexual activity with a 14-year-old boy.
Preston Crown Court heard how Christopher Robert Midgley struck up a relationship with the teenager while working as a youth project co-ordinator at a Lancashire school.
Outlining the case against the 26-year-old, of Brookside, Coppull, Katherine Johnson claimed he had ‘hugged and kissed’ the school pupil in his car after meeting outside the school, where he was employed.
She went on to describe how the defendant, who faces four charges of sexual activity with a child between February 2010 and July 2011 and four further offences of breaching his position of trust, had later engaged in sexual acts with the boy, but it was unclear whether he was under the age of 16 at the time.
She said: “It is the prosecution’s case that the defendant has had an inappropriate relationship with a pupil at Darwen Aldridge Community Academy, where Mr Midgley was employed as a youth project co-ordinator.”
Miss Johnson described how the defendant had been part of the school’s entrepreneurship team to help develop student’s ideas for new business.
Through that role he met the teenager and overtime he became his ‘mentor’.
She added: “Mr Midgley was not a teacher, but he was involved in delivering courses in the school.
“It was noticed that the pupil was a regular visitor to the entrepreneurship team office, however the teachers believed the relationship was a professional one.”
Miss Johnson went on to describe how the alleged victim had been contacted on social networking site Facebook by a person who was believed to be a friend of the defendant.
“The teenager received a friend request from a ‘Leo Scott’ and he began to communicate with him and he told him he liked the defendant,” she said.
“Leo provided the defendant’s MSN address and they started to chat on MSN links.
“They agreed to meet up outside school in February 2010.”
It is claimed that the pair met up to 20 times and would “kiss and hug”.
Miss Johnson added: “They met and sat in the defendant’s car which was parked a short distance away from the school.
“Whilst in the car they hugged and kissed on the lips.
“It is the prosecution’s case that the relationship continued that way – that they would regularly meet up outside school – this would be every few weeks.
“They would go for a drive and they would kiss and hug.”
The court heard how the relationship had allegedly continued after the teenager left school and started college.
It was only when the boy confided in a friend that the police were alerted.
Miss Johnson also showed the jury intimate pictures that the boy’s mum had found, but she told police she hadn’t realised that the other person in the photograph was a member of staff at the academy.