A married teacher who had an affair with an inmate at a prison in Doncaster has narrowly avoided jail.
Iryna Durham’s husband found out about the relationship and reported her to the authorities in June last year, Yorkshire Live reports.
Sheffield Crown Court was told the pair wrote letters to each other over the course of five months and were never physically intimate.
Prosecutor Louise Reevell said Durham, who taught in the prison, was interviewed under police caution but made no comment.
Durham, of Sycamore Close, Selby, North Yorkshire, was handed a suspended prison sentence after pleading guilty at the first opportunity to misconduct in a public office.
The 39-year-old mum was handed a four-month prison sentence, suspended for a year, with requirements to complete 10 days of rehabilitation activity and 200 hours of unpaid work.
She had no convictions prior to this case.
Ahead of the sentencing hearing, Durham wrote a letter to Judge Rachael Harrison, who also read a “positive” pre-sentence report on the defendant and character references.
Richard Holland, mitigating, said Durham’s husband discovered the letters and reported her to the authorities.
He said her humiliation was complete by the details of the case being heard in open court.
He said there is a realistic prospect of her rehabilitation and she has shown remorse, including by ending the relationship with the prisoner, who was transferred to another prison.
The judge gave Durham full credit for her early guilty plea.
She told Durham she had risked being blackmailed by the inmate or someone else in the prison, adding: “Thankfully that did not happen, but it means there has to be a deterrent sentence.”
The judge said she was willing to suspend an immediate custodial sentence for reasons including the effect her immediate imprisonment would have on other people.