A MAN accused of sneaking into a pensioner’s home and sexually assaulting her as she slept is a convicted sex offender, a jury heard.
Wayne Stephenson, 24, is on trial at Teesside Crown Court over the horrifying attack on a woman in her 60s.
Yesterday, the jury was told that Stephenson, who worked for Hartlepool Borough Council, was convicted at Durham Crown Court of sexually assaulting a 45-year-old woman in Horden in 2006.
He had approached the stranger in the street, grabbed hold of her and put his hands up her skirt before she screamed and ran off.
But giving evidence, Stephenson strenuously denied being responsible for the attack on the woman in her Hartlepool home during the early hours of November 6 last year.
He said he had been out drinking in the town centre after an argument with his mum and went home to bed with his girlfriend.
Lorraine Mustard, defending, asked: “Did you at any time enter her property?”
Stephenson replied: “No.”
Miss Mustard added: “Did you at any time assault her in any way?”
Stephenson said: “Certainly not.”
Responding to being identified by the victim, Stephenson said: “It’s mistaken identity, it happens.”
Under cross examination, Stephenson admitted giving police incorrect times for when he said he went out and got home but denied he lied, saying he loses concept of time when he drinks.
Stephenson’s girlfriend told the trial she met him in the street around the time of the attack after being dropped off by a taxi.
Stephenson, of Grange Road, Hartlepool, denies trespass with intent to commit a sexual offence and sexual assault.
The trial continues.