May 2019

Music teacher from near Dumfries jailed for sex offences

A music teacher has been jailed for nearly three years for sex offences against three teenage girls.

Gordon Brotherston, 64, admitted five charges against two girls under 16 and another who had just turned 16, over a period of nearly 10 years.

A sheriff told him it was a “breach of trust over a period of some years” and required a custodial sentence.

Brotherston, from Morrinton near Dumfries, was put on the sex offenders register for an indefinite period.

Dumfries Sheriff Court heard the offences had come to light when one girl’s mother reported his behaviour to the police.

Solicitor Gavin Orr, representing Brotherston, said he knew he had been doing wrong and described him as “remorseful”.

In passing sentence, Sheriff Brian Mohan said: “You are clearly a talented musician capable of teaching others musical skills and were a trusted and respected member of the community, but this was a breach of trust involving three young girls.”

March 2019

Music teacher who worked at Carlisle’s Austin Friars school admits sex offences

A 64-year-old music teacher who worked at an independent Carlisle day school has admitted six sex offences.

At Dumfries Sheriff Court, Gordon Brotherston, of Holmhead at Morrinton, just outside Dumfries, was told his name will now go on the sex offender register.

In court, he admitted five sex offences against two girls under 16 up to 10 years ago and another last year involving a girl had just turned 16.

At the time he was arrested, the court heard, he had been teaching at Austin Friars School in Carlisle. Neither of the victims were pupils at the school.

He was remanded in custody for background reports and his sentence was deferred until April 16 when he will also be told how long he will be on the register.

Fiscal depute Jennifer McGill said: “In one case the sexual behaviour with one girl had been taking place about once a week and sometimes at his home when his wife was in another room.

“The girl had admitted that she might have been in love with him.”

The fiscal told Dumfries Sheriff Court that Brotherston had been giving private tuition at his home at the time at Watling Street, Dumfries, and when arrested had been teaching at Austin Friars School.

The first two charges took place at Watling Street and in a car, on various occasions during a two year period from September 2008, by sending sexually explicit messages by phone, sexually touching the girl, and by having unlawful sex with her.

Two further charges involving another girl took place between June 2009 and 2011 also at Watling Street and in a car where he would engage in sexual acts with her.

In the fifth charge again at Watling Street he admitted on two occasions last June intentionally engaging in a sexual activity and exposing himself and committing a sexual act in the girl’s presence.

The fiscal added that Brotherston’s behaviour was exposed when one girl’s mother reported his behaviour to the police.