A Buffalo man who pleaded guilty in February to sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl tried to withdraw his plea Wednesday when he appeared for sentencing in State Supreme Court.
Justice Christopher J. Burns denied his request and sentenced Robert Proctor, 29, to 18 years in prison on the first-degree rape conviction. The judge also required him to serve 10 years post-release supervision.
Proctor previously admitted he had intercourse with the girl while he was at a house in Buffalo on Oct. 13. The child immediately reported the assault and Proctor was arrested Oct. 20.
On Wednesday, Proctor angrily told the judge that he felt coerced into making his guilty plea.
"I was not in my right state of mind when I took that plea deal. I am innocent and I can prove it. I would like to go to trial," he said.
Assistant District Attorney Bethany Solek pointed out that during the investigation and plea discussion, Proctor never indicated he felt he was being forced into a plea. The judge agreed Proctor had every chance to reject the plea and appeared clear-headed and coherent when he entered it.
When Burns began to proceed with sentencing, Proctor turned on his attorney, Brian Parker, and angrily told him he was fired. Then he began yelling "She's lying" several times, referring to the victim.
At that point Solek interjected, "I will note for the record that the defendant's DNA was found on the victim's vaginal area."
Burns pronounced sentence and, while Proctor continued his rant and court security stood at the ready, Solek asked for and was granted an order of protection for the victim that will be in place until Oct. 20, 2055.
Proctor is scheduled to appear before another judge on Monday on charges of misdemeanor assault and harassment, which allegedly occurred three days before the rape, on Oct. 10.