Former Shawnigan Lake teacher found guilty of sexual exploitation of student

A former teacher at Shawnigan Lake School is facing a mandatory jail sentence

A former teacher at Shawnigan Lake School is facing a mandatory jail sentence after he was found guilty of sexual exploitation of a former student.

Andrew Michael (Andy) Olson was convicted in Duncan Provincial Court on Wednesday of four counts of sexual exploitation and one of child luring in relation to offences that occurred on Dec. 28, 2014 and March 6, 2015, when Olson was a 34-year-old teacher and house leader at the boarding school, and the victim was a 17-year-old Grade 12 student.

Olson was suspended from his teaching position when the accusations first came to light, and was no longer employed there by the time he was charged in May 2015.

Judge Carmen Rogers felt that Crown counsel Leah Fontaine proved that Olson was in a position of trust and authority over the student, even though he did not teach her.

“I think it was a pretty clear case, in terms of Mr. Olson’s role,” Fontaine said after the verdict was announced. “The fact that he was a teacher at her boarding school is one of the clearest examples we get where someone is in a position of trust and authority.”

In addition to the five guilty verdicts, Olson was found not guilty of one count of sexual assault causing bodily harm. Neither he nor his lawyer, Geof Simair, spoke after proceedings.

A date for Olson’s sentencing will be set on May 31.

For the full story, see Friday’s edition of the Cowichan Valley Citizen.