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Former Maidstone driving instructor Wayne Dale convicted of indecently assaulting learner during lesson

A former driving instructor is facing sentence after he was convicted of indecently assaulting a pupil more than 15 years ago.

Sentence was adjourned on Wayne Dale, 70, for reports but a judge warned him: "All sentences are at large."

The 17-year-old victim was having lessons with Dale in Maidstone when he groped her and attempted to kiss her, the town's Crown Court heard.

Wayne Dale has been convicted
Wayne Dale has been convicted

He was alleged to have told her: "I will get you next time. Next time I will have you over the bonnet of the car."

Prosecutor Alec Williams said after the lessons started the small talk became sexual with Dale making comments about her breasts getting bigger.

"It is an indication of the direction of travel the relationship was going," he said. "It was a warning flag. She was beginning to feel increasingly uncomfortable.

Cloke was not a qualified driving instructor. Stock image.
Cloke was not a qualified driving instructor. Stock image.

"She was taking steps to dress down somewhat and avoid comments from him about her appearance."

Mr Williams said Dale told the girl he could give her some free lessons if she performed a sex act on him.

"We have gone through amber lights in communication between the two in banter," he said.

"It was out-of-the-blue unsolicited conduct. It was an indecent assault in any language" - Alec Williams, prosecuting

Mr Williams said the teenager was having a lesson at Blue Bell Hill when Dale made a grab for her breasts while she was driving.

"It was out-of-the-blue unsolicited conduct," he said. "It was an indecent assault in any language. She carried on with lessons."

There was "a more concerted assault", he said, at Maidstone test centre during a cigarette break.

"He grabs for her breasts and attempts to kiss her," said Mr Williams. "She turns her head away. His hands are on the top of her thighs and heading towards her groin area."

Dale then made the comment about getting her next time, he said.

She told her mother she did not want any more lessons from Dale because he was making passes at her.

The prosecutor said there was "a significant hiatus" before the victim complained to the police. She made an attempt to complain at the time but it was not pursued.

The boy was locked up for sexual abuse
The boy was locked up for sexual abuse

It was not until 2013 that she did so. Dale denied there was any conduct of a sexual nature.

Now of Nursery Road, Godalming, Surrey, he denied two charges of indecent assault.

The jury of eight men and four women convicted him of one charge and acquitted him of the other.

Judge Julian Smith continued bail until sentence. Dale's name will appear on the sex offenders' register.

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