A 19-year-old teacher aide who exchanged more than 400 text messages - many of a sexual nature - with a 12-year-old girl has been found guilty of sexually grooming the pupil.
Kevin Dean McMillan was charged after he worked at Blockhouse Bay Intermediate, where his mother was chairwoman of the board of trustees.
Judge Roy Wade delivered his decision this afternoon in the Auckland District Court.
He said that over nine days McMillan exchanged more than 400 text messages with the girl, many of them "entirely inappropriate".
Examples provided included, "I want to hold you tight and be the lucky person who kisses you goodnight", "lol so how far have you gone with a guy", "don't worry I'm not going to rape I always respect girls" and "what guys have you gone out with that I'll have to watch out for".
McMillan, who had arranged to meet the girl outside of school, had defended the charge and denied he had any sexual intent.
But Judge Wade found that although there was no physical contact of any kind between the pair, he was "satisfied beyond reasonable doubt" that McMillan was guilty.
He said that the text messages came to an end on 24 August last year, one week before the girl's father found them on his daughter's cell phone and complained to the school and police.
"I shall assume in his favour that, somewhat belatedly...he realised the folly of what he was doing and voluntarily broke off contact.
"I would be minded not to impose a sentence of imprisonment on this young man. Instead, my present intention is to impose a community based sentence."
At the request of McMillan's counsel the conviction was not technically entered, however Judge Wade noted that the likelihood of a discharge without conviction was "remote in the extreme".
McMillan will be sentenced in September.
- APNZBy Nicholas Jones Email Nicholas