London News & Search
Private math tutor Kevin Chan and his younger fiancee Kayla Drummonde have been found guilty of sexual assault and interference with a smart but troubled 14-year-old pupil.
Justice Leslie Pringle said both Chan, now 34, and Drummonde, now 25, “each had a very intense and inappropriate relationship with this 14-year-old girl,” starting in March 2014 and ending in mid-August of that year.
“They did hug, kiss and touch her … while I reject the Crown’s (Rick Nathanson and Geleta McLaughlin’s) theory of sexual gratification or luring, I find … the touching had a sexual aspect to it,” stated Pringle in her reasons released Thursday.
A sentencing date will be set on Sept. 19.
The victim’s identity is covered by a publication ban and her friends’ names were changed to protect her identity.
Pringle said the victim met Chan while she was in Grade 6 as she was tutored by Spirit of Math, but there was no outside contact.
Chan has since been fired from Spirit of Math.
Det. Lori Haggett said it “was a prolonged period of grooming between a troubled, vulnerable teen and this opportunistic couple.
As the relationship escalated in 2015, “she would come over to their North York home on an almost daily basis and they were trying to get her to move in with them and away from her traditional parents. who were trying to exercise normal control over their smart daughter,” said Haggett.
“The sexual acts were confined to kissing, spooning and cuddling but no mature sexual conduct,” said Haggett.
Pringle said the victim was struggling as she felt she was a bisexual, 14-year-old Grade 8 student. The bright victim’s grades were plummeting, and she was engaging in self-harm by cutting herself.
Her mother disapproved of her lesbian girlfriend, “Roberta,” who was having a romantic, but asexual relationship with the victim, restricted to kissing, cuddling and huddling, Pringle said.
Enter Chan and Drummonde.
“They provided a safe place for the victim to talk about Roberta, transgender issues and homophobia,” and someplace she and Roberta “could be affectionate and romantic,” wrote Pringle.
In June 2014, Chan said to the victim, “Don’t take this the wrong way,” and kissed her on the lips for a few seconds, court heard.
Drummonde later kissed the victim “with an open mouth,” and she and Chan would French kiss on the bed with the victim also on the bed, court heard. All three were clothed, said Pringle.
“Some (love song) lyrics reminded me of Kayla around your age (14),” wrote Chan to the victim, “And I never let go of her.”
Drummonde and the victim shared self-esteem and body image issues and Drummonde “would often tell the victim how beautiful she was, both personally and physically, and she responded positively,” the judge wrote.
“When I kiss you I feel like a girlfriend,” Drummonde wrote the victim and the judge concluded her letters “demonstrated a romantic, passionate and emotional content that appeared well beyond any platonic, asexual love relationship.
Love letters between the couple and the victim were intercepted by the victim’s mom and the Children’s Aid Society in 2014.
One CAS worker found “the letters to be inappropriate on some levels, but she didn’t read them as being sexual,” wrote Pringle. “The victim said the couple had never touched her private parts, kissed her or touched her in any inappropriate way.”
The victim promised to work on her relationship with her mother and end contact with Chan and Drummonde.
Despite losing his job and being warned to stay away from the victim by CAS and assuring the victim’s parents he wouldn’t see her, Chan persisted in contacting her in 2015, said Pringle.
The victim later said she would rather live with the couple than at her parents’ home.
“She didn’t tell the worker about the sexual interactions because she knew they were wrong and she was still trying to get the CAS to let her stay with them,” wrote Pringle.
The victim later agreed she wouldn’t have contact with the couple, but buried the keys to their apartment and reneged on her promise.
London News & Search