Burglar denies having “ladies tights fetish” and sex attack on pensioner

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A burglar accused of having a sexual fetish for ladies tights has denied attacking a pensioner in her Brighouse home.

Nigel Carroll, who grew up in Halifax, has admitted burgling the 70-year-old’s home a year ago, but he insisted that he had not come into physical contact with the pensioner as he searched her property for valuables to steal.

The 53-year-old, who has already pleaded guilty other burglaries in the area, told a jury at Bradford Crown Court today (Friday) that another man had accompanied him to Brighouse that evening, but he told him to wait in the car as he used a screwdriver to break into the house via a bedroom window.

Carroll, now of Wykebeck Avenue, Leeds, described how he had searched various rooms before stealing property including jewellery and a television.

But he said when he got back to the car the man, Karl Stead, was not there and he had to wait for him.

Carroll claimed that after about 10 minutes Mr Stead came back saying:”Let’s go. Let’s get out of here.”

The prosecution has alleged that Carroll was responsible for attempting to rape the pensioner and the jury has heard evidence from forensic scientists about his DNA profile being linked to samples taken from the victim’s jeans and bra.

The forensic tests are said to have eliminated Mr Stead.

During his evidence to the jury Carroll said he had never seen the pensioner until he watched a DVD of her police interview earlier this week.

Carroll has denied charges of attempted rape and sexual assault in relation to the attack on the pensioner who died following an unrelated fall a few months after the burglary.

He has also denied involvement in two other house burglaries in Birkenshaw and Leeds during which ladies tights were stolen.

During cross-examination by prosecutor Kitty Taylor Carroll was quizzed about a series of previous convictions in 1999 involving offences of harassment, indecent assault, burglary and outraging public decency.

Mrs Taylor highlighted the fact that the offences included references to ladies tights and even Carroll performing sexual acts with ladies tights, but the defendant insisted that he did not have a sexual fetish.

Carroll was also pressed about film footage found on a mobile phone which Mrs Taylor said had been taken by him.

“Whilst on public transport you secretly filmed the legs of a young girl on a bus?” said Mrs Taylor.

“No,” replied Carroll.

“Those images were taken by you weren’t they because of your interest in ladies’ or girls’ tights,” suggested Mrs Taylor.

“No,” said the defendant.

Mrs Taylor said Carroll had also filmed an elderly lady’s ankles with tights on in a waiting room, but he insisted he hadn’t taken the footage.

The trial will resume on Tuesday when the jury are expected to hear closing speeches and the judge’s summing up of the case.