Suffolk teacher who used a meat cleaver to teach pupils has court case dropped

Ipswich Crown Court

Ipswich Crown Court

A west Suffolk teacher charged with possessing a meat cleaver at the college where he taught will not face trial.

Ipswich Crown Court heard Jonathan Abbott used the cleaver to teach pupils at Mildenhall College Academy about the splitting of atoms and how enzymes work.

During yesterday’s hearing the Crown Prosecution Service brought to an end the 35-year-old’s 11-month legal ordeal by making an application to dismiss the case as it was not in the public interest to proceed.

Asked if he wanted to say anything on behalf of his client defence barrister Jonathan Goodman remarked there was a lot that could be said.

However, he only commented on the impact the court case has had on Mr Abbott, formerly of Gedge Close, Bury St Edmunds, but now of Fairy Fox Drive, Mildenhall.


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Mr Goodman said: “It’s clearly been incredibly stressful over a long period of time.”

Mr Abbott had faced an allegation of possession of a bladed article. He had pleaded not guilty to the charge during the summer and his case was adjourned for a trial in November.

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Yesterday the court was told Mr Abbott was on holiday when a supply teacher found a meat cleaver in an unlocked drawer of a desk.

It was said the cleaver had been used to demonstrate the splitting of atoms and also how enzymes work.

Prosecutor Edward Renvoize said the Crown took the view it was not in the public interest to continue with the prosecution.”

Recorder Ian Evans agreed to the application to dismiss the case due to the prosecution offering no evidence.

The matter was reported to Suffolk Constabulary on October 23 last year.

Following an investigation Mr Abbott was sent a summons on March 16 which said he must appear at West Suffolk Magistrates Court in Bury St Edmunds on March 27.

The case was committed to Ipswich Crown Court where a plea and case management hearing took place in early July.

When asked to comment on Mr Abbott’s current position with Mildenhall College Academy a spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that legal proceedings have been concluded in this case.

“However, given that an internal process may be carried out within the academy we are unable to make any further comment.

“The safety and security of our staff and pupils will always be of the highest priority and we take every precaution to ensure that they are safe and well cared for.”

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