15 Oct 2014

Victim relieved abuser denied parole

7:09 pm on 15 October 2014

A woman who was sexually abused when she was 11 is extremely relieved the man who assaulted her was denied parole at Rolleston Prison today.

Rolleston Prison

Leslie James Young was denied parole at Rolleston Prison today. Photo: RNZ / Jemma Brackebush

Leslie James Young ,63, is serving three years in prison after being convicted of seven sex abuse charges last year.

Young's own son is a major supporter of Leeann Rodgers of Christchurch, who waived the right to automatic name suppression to speak out.

Three of the charges Young was convicted on were for abusing Ms Rodgers four decades ago.

Ms Rodgers kept the abuse secret for 36 years and said she had her childhood taken from her, and as a teenager went off the rails.

"I told a lot of lies, I attracted men who were bad, I pushed away male members of my family because I was scared.

"He wrecked all of my life".

She said she gave up hope that anything would happen to Young.

She had told her parents the day after the crimes but said she did not tell them the full story.

Only now has she been able to move on.

"I get treatment, I get help for PTSD and anxiety.

"My nightmares are finally slowing down and so it's just been a great relief. I wish it had happened earlier".

Leslie Young's son Chris has not had a relationship with his dad since he was a teenager.

He keeps in touch with Leeann to offer her moral support.

"There's nothing anyone can say to fix it but in some ways I feel responsible, as the eldest son, even though I was four years old, I feel like I'm the head of the family and I've got to help her out".

Chris Young was also relieved his father was denied parole and believes he could reoffend.

"I think his sentence was too light....It was just a joke.

"For someone to do something like that to young girls who know no better and have trusted parents, who have put their trust in another adult, and him to betray the whole lot is disgusting".

At the parole hearing today, Leslie Young told the board he could not express how sorry he is for the pain he caused his victims.

He said he wants to finish the sex offender treatment programme, Kia Marama.

Young will re-appear at the parole board a year from now.