Dunedin teacher jailed over sexually abusing pupils

David Bond (70) admitted sexual assaults on eight pupils, prompting an unreserved apology from...
David Bond (70) admitted sexual assaults on eight pupils, prompting an unreserved apology from Otago Boys’ High School. PHOTO: ROB KIDD
A former Dunedin teacher who sexually abused pupils for more than a decade has been jailed for more than two years.

David Russell Bond (70) appeared in the Dunedin District Court this afternoon after previously admitting 20 indecent assaults against seven pupils from when he taught at Otago Boys’ High School between 2001-11.

The ex-teacher, now living in Cromwell, has served two terms of home detention in the past eight years for historic sex offences that emerged since his retirement.

His counsel Anne Stevens QC argued home detention was again appropriate given her client’s age but could not persuade Judge David Robinson, who sentenced him to 25 months’ imprisonment.

He said he was struck by a comment in a Probation report that Bond appeared “blasé” about his crimes.

The defendant claimed he was not attracted to young men, not homosexual and could not explain his motives.

“I’m so ashamed. I don’t understand it,” Bond said.

The judge said the emotional impact on the victims could only be described as “severe” and many continued to be plagued by their historical trauma, affecting relationships with spouses and children to this day.

Crown prosecutor Sarah McKenzie said Bond deliberately put himself in positions where he had direct access to the boys and she stressed the offending continued despite complaints to the school and “various internal investigations”.

She told the court he purposely targeted younger children, a theme underscored by the victims’ statements.

Otago Boys' High School. Photo: File
Otago Boys' High School. Photo: File

“If we were just a few years older, we would’ve told someone what was happening,” said one ex-pupil.

“I knew at the time what Mr Bond did was wrong but I let it slide. I didn’t want to be that person that talked about it. I didn’t want to draw attention to myself,” said another.

Such was the scale of his crimes, the court summary of facts spanned 13 pages.

Much of Bond’s lewd behaviour took place in the classroom where he would approach pupils from behind and force his groin against them while pretending to check their work, court documents stated.

The majority of the incidents happened in the presence of other pupils but there was also one brazen assault that took place in front of other teachers.

In 2010, Bond entered a computer class being supervised by two other teachers and approached a pupil from the rear.

The defendant put his chin on the boy’s shoulder then pressed his body against him, only leaving when one of the staff members shouted at him.

On occasion, Bond also outlined his teen victims.

In 2002 or 2003 he followed a 16-year-old into the school gym, where he congratulated him on winning a sporting event.

“While speaking to him he pushed his hand forward into the boy’s groin, intentionally pressing his hand into the front of the boy’s Spandex shorts,” it said.

Other instances were witnessed by junior cricketers who saw Bond rubbing himself through his shorts and indecently assaulted one 13-year-old player who was preparing to bat.

The teacher asked him if he was wearing a box.

“Before the victim could say anything, the defendant immediately reached down, put his hands on the victim’s penis and testicles and grabbed hold of them,” the summary said.

Mrs Stevens said Bond had been “isolated and lonely” and now presented no risk to children.

The defendant’s reputation was in tatters but Mrs Stevens said his career remained his life’s work.

“He was a very good maths teacher, he was a very good sports coach . . . he did give of himself fully to the young people of Otago Boys High School,” she said.

School rector Richard Hall, whose tenure at the school’s helm did not cross over with Bond’s, “unreservedly” apologised to all old boys affected after guilty pleas were entered in March.

“We won't forget it and there is no attempt to distance ourselves from it,” he said at the time.

Bond has been added to the Child Sex Offender Register and received a first strike under the Three Strikes regime.

 

Advertisement

Our journalists are your neighbours

We are the South's eyes and ears in crucial council meetings, at court hearings, on the sidelines of sporting events and on the frontline of breaking news.

As our region faces uncharted waters in the wake of a global pandemic, Otago Daily Times continues to bring you local stories that matter.

We employ local journalists and photographers to tell your stories, as other outlets cut local coverage in favour of stories told out of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

You can help us continue to bring you local news you can trust by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter