Chris Dawson ‘kissed and cuddled’ teen student in pool: Court

Christopher Dawson faces the rest of his life in jail, whatever his carnal knowledge sentence is.

Christopher Dawson faces the rest of his life in jail, whatever his carnal knowledge sentence is. Photo: AAP

Chris Dawson would sneak out to the beach with one of his teenage high school students and the pair were seen kissing and cuddling in a swimming pool, a judge has been told.

Dawson, 74, has pleaded not guilty to engaging in sexual activity with the then 16-year-old student, known in court as AB, between July and December 1980.

On Monday, AB’s friend gave evidence in court recounting times when the teacher and his twin brother Paul Dawson would spend time with the two girls.

The friend, known for legal reasons as CD, said that in years 9 and 10, she went to fitness classes in the Sydney suburb of Lindfield with AB, Chris and Paul.

The four of them would be in the swimming pool “kissing and cuddling” after the classes, CD said.

“What were you able to observe of Christopher Dawson and (AB) in the pool? What do you recall?”

“They were together, bodies together,” CD said.

CD babysat for Paul Dawson and his family while she was in year 8 and 9 and coached his daughter in netball, the court heard.

She denied claims by public defender Claire Wasley that there were other people in the pool at the time.

“I can guarantee you that there was zero people in the pool at the time that we were kissing and cuddling.”

The NSW District Court heard the four would sneak out to the beach when they were meant to be playing sport and had a plan to come out of school at separate times so they would not be seen together.

She admitted that she was unsure of the exact times that this “socialising” occurred.

“I know it happened. I know we were being groomed. I don’t know the exact dates,” she told Judge Sarah Huggett.

On Monday, Ms Wasley suggested CD’s recollection of the events alleged was not only hazy but had been contaminated through conversations with a friend who linked her with news articles referring to an investigation into the disappearance of Chris Dawson’s wife Lynette in 1982.

Dawson was also allegedly seen in the sports office of his Northern Beaches school standing close to AB who was sitting on his desk.

“She was sitting there with her legs apart and Mr Dawson was standing in between (them),” one former student told the court.

Another student said AB was “effectively a celebrity on the playground”.

The man said he saw the pair on an almost daily basis, exhibiting “constant physical closeness” while Dawson did playground duty.

“She was like his sidekick. It was like she was doing playground duty with him,” he told the court.

Ms Wasley has previously argued the alleged sexual activity began in 1981, after AB had turned 17 and was no longer Dawson’s student.

The historical carnal knowledge charge, which Dawson denies, was replaced in 1986.

The trial continues.

1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732)

National Sexual Abuse and Redress Support Service 1800 211 028


Topics: Chris Dawson
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