Former hip-hop dance teacher observed not guilty of sex offences

Ora Sawyers

A former dance trainer who labored at a North Vancouver dance studio has been located not responsible of alleged sexual offences in opposition to a teenage dance college student a decade in the past.

Adam Gregory McKinnon, 42, of Vancouver, had been accused of acquiring a sexual connection with a single of his pupils in excess of a two-year period of time, when the pupil was in between 15 and 17 decades previous. In a prolonged trial conducted more than quite a few months, he faced prices of sexual interference and invitation to sexual touching of a man or woman below 16, as perfectly as a demand of sexual exploitation and a charge of sexual assault.

On Tuesday, Judge Patricia Jantzen acquitted McKinnon of all prices in North Vancouver provincial court.

In her determination, Jantzen stated if she experienced to make your mind up if it was “more most likely than not” that there was sexual activity concerning the two, she would have thought the student’s model of situations about that of McKinnon.

But Jantzen claimed the defence experienced raised sufficient “reasonable doubt” to find McKinnon not guilty of the prices.

Through the demo, the student – whose identification is secured by a publication ban – testified that they commenced dancing at an elite degree when they were being continue to in elementary school, and initial began getting dance lessons from McKinnon at age 12. By the time the pupil was 15, they had also joined McKinnon’s semi-skilled dance team at the Harbour Dance Centre. That concerned having courses afterwards at night, and McKinnon would often travel the college student residence, they said.

The scholar testified that their marriage finally turned sexual and involved being personal with McKinnon in his automobile in secluded shopping mall or park parking tons in North Vancouver, in washrooms and in film theatres.

The pupil testified it was not till they ended up an adult in therapy that they realized “it was a predatory partnership.”

All through the demo, defence lawyer Tony Tso questioned the former student’s recollection of activities, suggesting some of the moments and areas the college student mentioned they had intercourse with McKinnon have been unlikely.

Testifying in his own defence, McKinnon instructed the decide no sexual action with the scholar ever took area.

In her final decision, Jantzen reported she did not uncover McKinnon a credible witness, including he downplayed his function of electricity and impact in the student’s everyday living.

His testimony that he in no way acquired the student a “burner phone” and did not devote time with the college student alone was contradicted by the testimony of other dancers and the student’s close friends and family members, Jantzen observed.

But she reported there were being also inconsistencies in the student’s testimony, which bundled having difficulties to remember locations wherever they stated sexual intercourse took area and how extensive the lunch breaks were being at the downtown dance studio when they reported frequent intercourse took place.

The pupil was also unaware of a outstanding birthmark on McKinnon’s system – verified by a health care assessment – which “must increase a doubt” about the student’s testimony “that they experienced substantial sexual speak to about a time period of more than two years,” said the judge.

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