Bully teaching assistant found guilty of taping seven-year-old girl to chair

She believed the cruelty was "a bit of fun", the court heard

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The Independent Online

A teaching assistant has been found guilty of bullying a seven-year-old girl at a school in Calderdale, West Yorkshire.

Rachael Regan, 43, taped the girl to a chair and shut her in a storeroom during a five-month classroom bullying campaign.

Bradford Crown Court heard how the assistant believed the bullying was “a bit of fun”. She said the girl did not seem upset by her actions at the time.

The assistant also put post-it notes on the girl’s thumbs to stop her sucking them, hid her doll, and tore up a photograph of her.

The young girl’s mother said her daughter was in tears after the incident involving the adhesive tape; her complaint prompted an investigation by the school.

Regan is said to have shown her actions to other staff members.

A jury found her guilty in less than four hours.

Detective Chief Inspector Darren Minton said: "Rachel Regan was employed in a position of trust and she broke that trust with her actions.

"This conviction should send a loud and clear message that such behaviour from anyone is unacceptable, but particularly those employed in positions of significant trust."

Regan, who denied the charge of cruelty, will be sentenced next year. A teacher was found not guilty of the same charge.

Judge Neil Davey QC said Regan would not go to prison for her crime.