A WOMAN convicted of killing a baby has this week emerged as the partner of a prolific sex offender who has been given an indeterminate jail sentence for public protection.
Vile Karl Vickers targeted a 51-year-old mother-of-two as she slept on the sofa in her home in the early hours.
He first broke into the house and helped himself to her purse, cash cards and laptop before returning to perform sex acts on the victim and finally locking her in a shed.
He had forced her to cover her face with a duvet and locked her in a cupboard under the stairs before pouncing on her.
He ripped out her phone wires before escaping, Burnley Crown Court heard.
We can exclusively reveal that the 40-year-old pervert, who has more than 100 previous convictions, lived in York Close, Clayton-le-Moors, with Wendy Barlow, who was jailed for three years for the manslaughter of 18-month-old Joshua Massey Hodgkinson.
The baby slipped from her hold and drowned in the bath at her former Sabden home in 2004 while she was drunk.
She is now known as Wendy Vickers after taking Vickers’ name as a "romantic gesture" while they were together.
She said this week she had only seen Vickers once in prison since he was sentenced to 18 months for stealing her car in 2007.
Miss Vickers, 42, of Accrington, who is now attending Alcoholics Anonymous to beat her addiction, said: "I was absolutely gobsmacked when I heard what Karl had done. He deserves to be locked up and to never get out. He disgusts me. I never knew he was capable of anything like that. He never showed any signs to me.
"Everybody told me not to get involved with him but I just didn’t listen.
"I really want to change my name back but it costs £70 and at the moment I just can’t afford it. Every time I get a good job somebody reports me and I get the sack."
Vickers must serve at least 63 months and 12 days behind bars before he is eligible to be considered for parole. He could spend the rest of his life in prison if the parole board believes he is not fit to be released.
He was put on the Sex Offenders‘ Register for life after admitting two counts of rape, one of burglary and one of assault by penetration. His victim, who has suffered nightmares since her ordeal, was in court to see him sentenced, as was a woman he attacked in her home in 1986.
Judge Norman Wright said: "It is truly every woman’s worst nightmare.
"I have come to the clear view there is a significant risk of you causing serious harm."
Vickers was caught out through DNA evidence after leaving a trace of semen on the kitchen floor but later claimed somebody had planted the evidence.
The chances of it belonging to anyone else are one in a billion.
Detective Chief Inspector Paul Withers, who led the investigation, said: "One of the reasons we apprehended him so quickly was because of the help of the local community. They gave us our initial leads and made witness statements which implicated him. He was actually in custody when we had the forensic hit."