A MUSIC teacher caught with images of child sex abuse on his phone was jailed on Friday.
Jonathan Hutton was handed a 16-month term after a hearing at Londonderry Crown Court.
The 37-year-old, of Papworth Avenue in the city, who pleaded guilty to 22 charges of possessing abuse images, was also placed on the sex offenders’ register for 10 years and given a 10-year Sexual Offences Prevention Order.
He was caught after police called at his home in May 2015.
Officers who examined his phone found over 120 indecent images of girls aged four to 14 — seven of them category A, seven in category B and 109 in category C — and a category A video.
Hutton, who graduated with a degree in music from Manchester University before taking a post-graduate qualification in teaching, was arrested at his then address in Irvinestown in September 2019.
Judge Philip Babington said the defendant was addicted to cannabis and alcohol at the time of his offending.
“There is no doubt he developed a curiosity towards sex which moved on towards pornography and then onto child pornography,” he added.
“He realised from time to time that what he was doing was illegal and he tried to move away from it, describing it as ‘a beast that always rears its ugly head’.
“It seems that this interest in indecent images, specifically of schoolgirls aged 14 or so, continued until he was remanded for these matters”.
Judge Babington said Hutton had been “very candid” with the probation officer who compiled a pre-sentence report for the court.
“He was able to show a level of victim awareness and expressed his regret and remorse for doing what he did, both for the victims and in relation to the impact on his own family”, he added.
The probation officer’s report said Hutton had a medium likelihood of re-offending and was willing to engage with programmes of rehabilitation.
Jailing him for 16 months, Judge Babington said he took into consideration the defendant’s guilty pleas and the fact there was no evidence that he had made or distributed any incident images.
Under the terms of his Sexual Offences Prevention Order, Hutton is banned from staying overnight at any address and from using any internet-enabled device without the prior approval of his risk manager.
He is also prohibited from any activity that would give him access to children or vulnerable adults.