CLEARFIELD – The case against a Clearfield woman convicted of inappropriately touching a student at the Clearfield County Career & Technology Center has been dismissed.
Edna Spencer, 61, of Clearfield, a former aide who worked (for an outside entity) in the CCCTC was charged in connection with an incident at the school on March 15, 2018 when she touched a 17-year-old student in the culinary arts locker room and made a sexual comment, according to testimony at the September trial.
The victim testified that the encounter was “creepy” and made her feel uncomfortable.
The jury found Spencer guilty of indecent assault and corruption of minors and in December she was sentenced to serve two years probation.
Her attorney, Christopher Mohney filed a motion for acquittal on both charges and a hearing on this was held Friday.
In the motion, Mohney noted that in order for the jury to find Spencer guilty of indecent assault, the Commonwealth would have to prove that she made contact with the girl “for the purpose of arousing or gratifying her own or the victim’s sexual desire” and that she acted knowingly or recklessly without the victim’s consent.
It was noted that the only evidence presented at the trial concerned the touching of the victim and a comment that “you can see her curves” by Spencer.
During her interrogation with police, Spencer admitted to touching the girl’s waistline and saying she looked sexy, but maintained it was “pure motherly admiration.”
The motion claimed the verdict was in “contradiction to the physical facts” and “in contravention to human experience.”
The motion agreed Spencer’s actions were “socially inappropriate and a violation of school policy, but said they did not rise to the level of the commission of a criminal act.”
Deputy District Attorney Trudy Lumadue told Cherry that although she did not handle the case, which was prosecuted by the previous DA, she reviewed the trial transcript and felt the jurors made their decision based on the facts. She asked Cherry to uphold the jury’s verdicts.
Cherry stated during the hearing that he was not condoning what Spencer did, but agreed that there was insufficient evidence to show she had acted to “gratify some sexual desire.”
He then acquitted Spencer on both charges and dismissed the case.
Spencer hugged her family members and was visibly relieved after the announcement.
At her sentencing hearing in December, Cherry commented that he had never before seen such an “outpouring of support” for anyone, which included 25 letters of support.
Among those defending her was her husband who said “she is one of the most honest people I know,” he said. “I know in my heart the charges didn’t happen in the way presented.”
Spencer had no prior criminal record.
For more information on the trial, click here.