A former teacher at Cathedral High School in Hamilton, has been sentenced to three years in prison for sexually assaulting a student. As Donna Skelly reports, this isn’t the first time Joe Graziano was sentenced for abusing a student in his care.
56 year old Giuseppe “Joe” Graziano sat silently in the courtroom as the verdict was read. Three years in prison, a lifetime listed on the sex offender registry.
Evidence in the week long trial showed that Graziano, who taught religion and cosmetology at Cathedral High School, first befriended the troubled victim, when the boy was in grade nine. Over the next three years Graziano sexually assaulted the teen at Cathedral High School, at Graziano’s home and in a trailer he owned.
The victim, who was in court this morning, did not want to talk on camera said he was disappointed that Graziano wasn’t given a harsher sentence. The crown had been seeking a term of between five and six years.
When handing down the sentence, Justice Harrison Arrell said he took into consideration Graziano’s exemplory record. Postings from 2003 on the “Rate your Teacher” website, paint a picture of a popular teacher beloved by students.
Justice Arrell also noted that Graziano had the support of his family, although he has just recently separated from his wife of 32 years, and that he had lost a career he loved.
This is not the first time Graziano has been linked to the sexual abuse of children. He was found guilty of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old male student at Cathedral High School in 2011.
Charges involving the sexual assault of a disabled student were dropped.