TWO charity workers have been sacked after they were caught in a sex act on a bus carrying disabled students.
A shocked passer-by called police after seeing Lesley Armour, 47, and 64-year-old Terence Webb, who were working for Educational Services for People with Autism (Espa) College in Sunderland at the time, enjoying a steamy session on a college minibus in broad daylight.
The man was so incensed by their display on Hendon Promenade that he banged on the window of the bus.
They drove off and later told bosses that the man had reacted angrily to the students, who are autistic.
But the sordid secret of the two learning skills assistants was revealed after police were called in.
They pleaded guilty to outraging public decency during separate hearings at Sunderland Magistrates’ Court this week.
Paul Anderson, prosecuting, said it was about noon on May 10 when the witness spotted the defendants in a such a “passionate embrace” that he decided to confront them, as he was worried about the two students.
Mr Anderson said: “He got out of his car and knocked on the window of the minibus. Mr Webb looked shocked. He was sitting in the middle seat of three and his trousers were open. Mrs Armour was naked from the waist down. Her underwear and trousers were in the foot well of the passenger side of the bus.”
Armour, from Boldon Colliery, who had worked at the college for 11 years, told police that they had left an event at Raich Carter sports centre in Hendon early, as one of the students became upset.
They decided to drive to the beach before lunch, as the sea helped calm the student down.
She admitted they began kissing and Webb had touched her underneath her clothes, but she denied taking off her trousers.
Mr Anderson added: “She said she had been involved with Terry for three to four years, though they are both married to other people.”
Jaxon Taylor, defending Armour, of Topping Street, said there were discrepancies between the prosecution case and what she told police.
“The fact is she engaged in some form of sexual activity with Mr Webb, although there were two adults with learning difficulties in the back of the bus.
“Albeit they did not see the sexual activity, there was one person who could have witnessed the incident that was being undertaken.”
Webb, of Compton Court, in Oxclose, Washington, denied having his trousers open during the tryst, which he claimed was a one-off.
Andy Travis, defending, said: “It should never have happened, but it was not pre-planned. He is a man of good character.”
Both cases were adjourned for three weeks so pre-sentence reports could be prepared.
Speaking after the case, Lesley Lane, chief executive of Espa – which its website said provides “a positive educational experience that prepares both day and residential students for their future life, well-being and work” – stressed that the students were not aware of what was going on.
She said: “There was an incident involving two members of staff. They were immediately suspended and have been subsequently dismissed.
“There was never a point where any one we support was put at risk and we fully complied with the police investigation.”