A FORMER teacher has been jailed for more than 17 years after admitting sexual abuse against girls.
Geoffrey Openshaw, now 73, was employed by the local authority as a PE teacher at Darwen Vale High School (DVHS) between 1972 and 1989.
His five victims were all girls and the abuse spanned three decades between the 1970s and 1990s. Some of the abuse took place at the school.
During the course of his offending he wrote letters to his victims, bought them presents and took them on excursions, even though at the time he was married with two young children.
Openshaw, of Out Rawcliffe, near Preston, admitted 14 counts of indecent assault and one of sexual intercourse with a girl under 13 earlier this year.
He was sentenced at Preston Crown Court today (Tuesday, December 3rd) to 17 years and three months with a one year extended licence.
He will be on the Sex Offenders’ Register for life.
Lesley Connor, of Lancashire Constabulary’s Operation Fervent Team, said: “Openshaw abused his position to groom and abuse his victims over a long period of time and I would to pay tribute to them for the incredible courage they have shown to come forward and speak about what they have been through. Bringing Openshaw to justice would not have been possible without them.
“I would urge anyone who has been a victim of sexual abuse, no matter how historic or who the alleged abuser was to come forward and report it to us safe in the knowledge that we will investigate professional and sensitively.”