‘Diabetes defence’ falls short for teacher who exposed himself to students
Published Thursday, January 17, 2013 8:58PM EST
Last Updated Friday, January 18, 2013 12:25PM EST
MONTREAL—Yannick Letendre has lost his job, now he’s looking to avoid jail time.
On Thursday, the 43-year-old French teacher at a LaSalle high school pleaded guilty to luring female students on the Internet and exposing himself with his webcam. Seeking leniency, Letendre’s defence raised quite a few eyebrows.
In 2009, Letendre told students at the Cavelier-De LaSalle High School to join him online, many obliged. On two occasions he bared it all, much to their surprise and horror.
One parent actually saw the performance. The school was notified and Letendre was arrested.
On Thursday, he testified that his loss of inhibition was caused by type-one diabetes. Letendre said he often becomes hypoglycemic and told the court that the condition leads to strange behaviour—including stripping.
An endocrinologist, who treats diabetes, testified that it was not impossible, especially if he drank alcohol after taking his insulin.
The prosecution took issue with the defence and called their own expert who testified that it would be highly unlikely that diabetes could cause what the former teacher described.
Letendre never brought up his illness during a two-hour interrogation with police, but he can be heard pleading the officer not to bring him to court.
"If I’m charged I will lose my job and I have 100 students who will miss me. They were crying when I was arrested," Letendre is overheard telling police.
That excuse also fell short and Letendre was heard complaining on Thursday that he's unemployed and broke. Because of the attention his case has attracted his sentencing hearing is scheduled for Feb. 11.
For now, he's not allowed anywhere near a computer or children.