Robert Connor, aged 63, from Leeds, has been sentenced to prison for sexual offences dating back to the 1970s when he was a teenager. The verdict was delivered at Leeds Crown Court last Thursday, where Connor was found guilty of rape, sexual assault, and attempted rape against two victims aged 11 and 12 or 13. These appalling acts occurred in the Chapeltown area of the city between 1977 and 1980.

During the time of the offences, Connor was between 16 and 19 years old. On 8th March, he was sentenced to five years for offences against one victim and two years for offences against the other. These sentences will run concurrently.

The court listened to victim impact statements from both individuals, who are protected by anonymity for legal reasons.

One victim said: “I still feel the shock and the numbness of it all, that has never left me. I never spoke up as I didn’t think I would be believed.”

The other victim said: “Time has shown me that I cannot simply move on with my life as I am continually disturbed by hauntings from the past.”

“Robert Connor ruined my life when he attacked me. I did understand the significance of what he had done, but I was too scared to tell anyone, and this included the police and my family as I did not think I would be believed.

“I was only 11 when I was attacked and that day everything changed, and I lost my innocence, I was violated by him and treated like a piece of meat, my cries for help meant nothing to him.”

Following the trial Detective Inspector Mark Tester of Leeds District Safeguarding said: “Connor carried out these attacks in his local area a long time ago and up until 2022 thought he had got away with it.

“The bravery of the victims in this case, who appeared in person in court, should not be underestimated, they showed tremendous courage in helping to bring him to justice.

“We have dedicated safeguarding officers here in Leeds who work with victims of sexual offending whether it is recent or not.

“I would urge anyone who has been a victim of this kind of offending to report these matters to police. You will be believed.”