South Yorkshire physiotherapist cleared of sex charges

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AN NHS chartered physiotherapist has been cleared of all charges after being accused of carrying out sex assaults on two female patients at his clinics in South Yorkshire.

Married father-of-three Richard Scholefield, aged 47, walked free from Sheffield Crown Court after jurors took just 45 minutes to deliver their verdict following a two-week trial.

Judge Michael Murphy had earlier ordered the jury to clear Mr Scholefield of three charges of intentionally touching a 39-year-old woman’s private parts.

The physio was also found not guilty of intimately touching a 16-year-old girl he was treating for a hip complaint.

Mr Scholefield was still accused of one offence of touching the 39-year-old intimately, but the jury cleared him of that too.

There were gasps of delight from his family and supporters in the public gallery as the verdict was delivered.

Mr Scholefield had denied all five charges of sexual assault.

The 39-year-old claimed he had assaulted her in a treatment room at Barnsley’s Mount Vernon Hospital, and the teenager said she was touched at a clinic in Penistone.

Mr Scholefield worked for the NHS in the South Yorkshire area, and had been suspended following the complaints.

Mr Scholefield, from Huddersfield, told the court he had treated 17,000 patients in 11 years without complaint.