A TEACHING assistant abused a vulnerable young boy after developing sexual feelings for him, a court heard.

Lisa Richardson was working at a Teesside school when she met the boy more than a decade ago.

The matters came to light when the complainant's mother challenged him over 'love bites' on his neck and he admitted having sexual relations with the defendant.

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The 47-year-old, of Tyrone Road, Stockton, denies six counts of sexual assault at Teesside Crown Court.

Matthew Bean, prosecuting, described how Ms Richardson would take the alleged victim to a room in the school where she would cuddle him and kiss him on the mouth.

The boy's mother was said to like and trust the defendant and allowed her to look after him at his home when she went out.

The defendant would arrange to meet him in some bushes and also in fields where she would commit sex acts on him.

Mr Bean also said the defendant regularly began having sex with the boy after leading him upstairs to bed.

She also put her hands down his trousers and put his hands on her breasts.

Describing one incident, the prosecutor said: “After they had finished he can recall the defendant told him 'This is wrong'.”

Police were eventually contacted and they interviewed the teaching assistant who denied all allegations of sexual activity involving the boy.

Addressing the jury, Mr Bean said that rather than setting clear boundaries the defendant began to have sexual feelings for the boy.

He said: “At this time [the complainant] was a vulnerable boy...She was also in a position of particular trust.

“It is against this background that the defendant at first befriends and then begins to have sexual relations with [him].

“The prosecution say this happens regularly.”

The trial was adjourned until Tuesday and is expected to last up to five days.