Jury Hears Details of Alleged Sexual Molestation By Former Teacher
STATESVILLE, NC - Jurors heard graphic testimony Tuesday in the trial of a former teacher accused of years of sexual abuse. The alleged incidents took place in the 1970s and 80s and resurfaced just recently.
Former Iredell County teacher John Patterson listened with his head down as his 4th grade students, now adults, testified against him. All had similar stories they recounted in person or in taped police interviews.
They say Patterson would start the day at Mount Mourne Elementary by choosing a student to read a passage from the Bible. He would have the boy sit in his lap and fondle them from behind his desk.
"He would take my hand and rub it against his genitals as well," one student said.
Another told investigators it went further. That student claims Patterson took him and another classmate to a stage in the gym. "Eventually it would be me and (the other student) touching each other," he said.
That boy also says Patterson forced him to kiss a girl in his class and asked him inappropriate sexual questions. And that Patterson told him, "It shouldn't go beyond our knowledge."
In 1987, a boy did tell his grandmother what happened and she took the concerns to the school principal, James Meadows. Meadows testified he filed a police report and took the concern to the superintendent.
He says Patterson was asked if he wanted to defend himself or resign. He decided to resign.
Patterson now faces over 200 sex charges from 14 different accusers.