Anthony Theodore Vance - Photo2

Piano teacher Anthony Theodore Vance jailed for five years for sexually abusing students

By court reporter Loukas Founten

Posted Tue at 12:37pm

An elderly piano teacher from South Australia who sexually abused three of his students has been jailed for five years.

Anthony Theodore Vance, 76, was found guilty of the persistent sexual exploitation of three young students between 2003 and 2008 during lessons he gave at two schools on the Fleurieu Peninsula or at his Christies Beach home, south of Adelaide.

The District Court heard the offending involved indecent touching on top of the girls’ clothing.

Vance has maintained his innocence and Judge Michael Boylan told him he had shown little insight into what was a substantial breach of trust.

“Children of all ages must be protected from sexual predators,” Judge Boylan said.

“There were three victims, you have no insight into your offending and its consequences, and your offending involved a substantial breach of trust.”

Judge Boylan said he had seen more severe cases of sexual abuse, but that did not mean Vance’s offending had not had a lasting impact.

“The fondling of all three girls was always on the outside of their clothing. There was never any penetration,” he said.

“Many offences against children involve more physically invasive contact.

“[One victim] said that she was a prisoner to her secret.

“That is a very eloquent way to describe how victims of sexual abuse feel.”

Vance can apply for parole in three years.

He no longer teaches at schools and has only two private students.

The court heard he has notified them and others he has dealings with of his charges and the verdicts.

Elderly piano teacher found guilty of sexual abuse of three students

By court reporter Loukas Founten

Thu 6 Nov 2014, 12:49pm

An elderly piano teacher has been found guilty of sexually abusing three students during lessons at two South Australian schools.

Anthony Theodore Vance, 76, had pleaded not guilty to three counts of persistent sexual exploitation of a child.

It was alleged he repeatedly touched three girls indecently during lessons at their schools on the Fleurieu Peninsula or at his home, between January 2003 and December 2008.

Vance denied there had been any inappropriate touching but Judge Michael Boylan found him guilty of all three counts.

Judge Boylan said all three girls gave consistent evidence and there was no possibility they colluded.

“The accused denied ever touching any student, including the three complainants, inappropriately,” he said.

“I do not accept the accused’s evidence about lack of opportunity to commit offences in the music room … or in his own house.

“He has, in my view, exaggerated the frequency of other people being there.”

The judge said he also considered the evidence put to the trial about Vance’s previous good character.

“I am satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that each of the three complainants has given me a truthful and accurate account of the accused’s having touched them in ways they said he did, on numerous separate occasions … during the periods of their piano and keyboard lessons with him,” he said.

Vance remained on bail and the hearing of sentencing submissions was set for February.


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