Convicted rapist found not guilty of second sexual atttack on woman

The man responsible for a sexual attack on a University of York student in May 1996 has been found not guilty of another rape. Despite holding a 23-year long record of sexual assault, Steven Sellars has been cleared of another attempted assault near Clifton Bridge in June of the same year.

Sellars was arrest last May for his assault in May 1996 and pleaded guilty to that offence. He has been remanded in custody, awaiting sentence over a crime that on conviction carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

Following the arrest, intense media coverage lead to the victim of the Clifton Bridge assault recognized Sellars as her attacker from pictures in local papers. She pressed charges immediately.

Sellars pleaded not guilty of the most recent accusation, and stressed that the disgust he felt for himself after the former incident led him to a suicide attempt and a subsequent life change.

Sellars’ wife broke down in tears of relief as the not-guilty verdict for this attack was read out. Her husband has already served seven years in prison for previous sexual assaults, among which was an ‘indecent sexual attack’ towards two eleven year old females, an incident the jury was unaware of at the time of the trial.

Sentencing for the assault in May 1996 has currently been postponed following a request from Sellars’ barrister. Nicholas Johnson requested the delay until a conclusion has been reached by psychiatrists as to whether Sellars could pose a threat to women, and to what extent, after his release. Judge Stephen Ashurst, the Recorder of York, claimed that the report of psychiatrists would be of the utmost importance in reaching a decision upon the sentence.

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