Regina teacher Corey Matthews has been found not guilty of sexually assaulting a student.
Matthews's family hugged in the courtroom Tuesday when Queen's Bench Justice Catherine Dawson acquitted him of all charges.
People supporting the accuser were upset. One said to Matthews: "How many lives are you going to wreck, Corey?"
Matthews had been charged with sexual assault and sexual touching. His trial concluded Dec. 18 when Dawson heard final arguments from the defence and Crown lawyers.
The complainant in the case is 22 years old. He alleged the abuse happened when he was 14.
Matthews, a well-known figure in Regina's north-central community, was a popular sports coach and mentor to inner-city youth.
According to testimony from the accuser, there were a number of incidents in 2005 of sexual abuse ranging from touching to intercourse. The accuser said the episodes took place in the teacher's vehicle, at his home and once in a classroom.
Matthews denied the allegations and his lawyer argued the evidence in the case was circumstantial, with no medical evidence provided and no witnesses.
The Crown prosecutor argued the evidence of the accuser was believable.
Dawson said she acquitted Matthews because there was reasonable doubt he was guilty. Matthews was a credible witness, but there were inconsistencies in the testimony of the complainant, Dawson said.
Matthews, 36, was a teacher at Scott Collegiate in Regina but has not been in a classroom for several years.
'What did I win today? I've lost my career. I've lost a lot of things' - Corey Matthews
Following his acquittal, Matthews told reporters he's not sure what's next for him, but he expects the court proceedings will follow him.
"What did I win today? I've lost my career. I've lost a lot of things," he said.