Toronto Sun

Thursday, June 27, 2002

Pal: Kid told to see hot movie

Teacher on trial

By ROB GRANATSTEIN, TORONTO SUN

BARRIE -- A Grade 8 student's best friend testified the Barrie school teacher made that indecent proposal to the 13-year-old, who she also wrote dozens of sexually charged letters to, encouraging him to watch the film Murder at "Mrs. Sclater informed us there was supposed to be her relative in it in the opening scene," the 17-year-old told court yesterday. "She was nude and it looked like her.

"'Go watch it,'" he said Sclater told the boy.

As any group of 13-year-olds would do, they rented the Wesley Snipes film.

Sclater has pleaded not guilty to sexual interference, invitation to sexual touching and sexual assault against the Grade 8 student between January and April 1998.

The 17-year-old also testified Sclater played pickup basketball with the teens before school or at lunch time and would always be matched up one-on-one with the pupil.

"It seemed to me these games were set up so that she could have an excuse for touching him and being touched," the boy testified, adding she never fouled anyone else that way.

He told Sclater's lawyer, David Matheson, he didn't think it was sexually inappropriate behaviour -- just poor basketball technique -- until he met with the alleged victim's civil lawyer.

But the boy did not mention he thought her tactics were inappropriate in an interview with South Simcoe Police, shortly after going over his statements with the civil lawyer.

The boy was also shown three pictures of Sclater in T-shirts and shorts and immediately said what she wore for their games was far more revealing. He told Matheson the then-27-year-old teacher wore short shorts and T-shirts that exposed her belly button.

The boy also testified he saw his best friend be kissed and hugged by Sclater and they sat on each other's laps in front of her class.

The trial continues today.

Copyright © 2002, Canoe, a division of Netgraphe Inc.