News

Teacher on charges of sexual assault stays behind bars

HISTORICAL CHARGES: St John’s College has been identified as the school where a retired teacher, who has since been arrested, taught.
HISTORICAL CHARGES: St John’s College has been identified as the school where a retired teacher, who has since been arrested, taught. Marc Stapelberg

A FORMER St John's Woodlawn teacher facing 36 charges relating to the alleged sexual and indecent assault of students will remain in jail until at least mid September.

In April 2014, police launched strike force Galvo to investigate reports that 10 former Woodlawn College students had been allegedly sexually assaulted by a former teacher.

Police allege the offences occurred between 1967 and 1993.

On Wednesday, June 4, detectives attended the East Lismore home of Richard O'Connor.

He was arrested and taken to Lismore police station, where he was charged.

In July, Richard O'Connor spent more than a week in Lismore Base Hospital due to a self-inflicted stab wound that occurred the day he was due to appear at court, July 14.

A warrant was issued by Magistrate David Heilpern for O'Connor's arrest, which was executed by police when he was discharged from hospital.

At O'Connor's last appearance on August 5, Mr Heilpern ordered he be held in Sydney's Long Bay prison hospital and get access to his medication.

On Tuesday, Lismore Local Court heard the police brief of evidence against O'Connor was incomplete.

O'Connor's solicitor Hugh Van Dugteren told the court his client was not at Long Bay prison hospital.

"I can indicate to your honour he's still at Grafton," he said.

Mr Van Dugteren said O'Connor's health condition prevented him being taken to Long Bay.

Mr Heilpern adjourned the case to next month.

Topics:  indecent assault sexual assault



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