San Francisco, CA – San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins announced today that Robert Thomas (56), of San Francisco pleaded guilty to and was convicted of multiple child sex assault incidents between 2001 and 2011. Mr. Thomas pleaded guilty to and was convicted of aggravated sexual assault of a child – sodomy (PC 269(a)(3)) and admitted that the allegation that he had a prior strike offense (PC 1170.12) was true. He also pleaded guilty to and was convicted of committing a lewd act upon a child (PC 288(a)) and admitted that the allegation that the offense was committed against more than one victim (PC 667.61(e)(4)) was true. Lastly, he admitted that the allegation that he had suffered a prior strike conviction (PC 667(a)(1)) was true. Mr. Thomas will be sentenced to fifty years to life in state prison for his crimes.
“I would like to thank the survivors of these horrific crimes for their courage and for trusting in my office to deliver justice for them,” said District Attorney Brooke Jenkins. “These survivors have waited far too long to receive justice. Finally, Mr. Thomas will now face consequences for his depraved crimes. I hope the outcome of this case sends a message of hope to those suffering and a warning to perpetrators. My office will leave no stone unturned and do everything in our power to ensure there is accountability, no matter how long it takes.”
In May of 2011, it was discovered that Jane Doe One had been sexually assaulted by Robert Thomas, since she was eight years old, in 1998. Initially, Mr. Thomas would touch Jane Doe One on her body and threaten to kill her should she tell anyone. When she was nine, the abuse escalated, and he sodomized and orally copulated her. At the age of twelve, Mr. Thomas attempted to rape Jane Doe One. By the age of 15, he had raped Jane Doe One on multiple occasions. After each instance of abuse, he threatened to kill not only Jane Doe One but also her family members. Unbeknownst to the victim, Mr. Thomas had recorded a few of the sexual assaults.
Mr. Thomas was arrested by San Francisco Police following Jane Doe One’s disclosure in May of 2011. During the course of the investigation, it was discovered that Mr. Thomas had sexually assaulted other girls and women who ranged in age from 8 to 19 including Jane Doe Two.
In March of 2001, Mr. Thomas assaulted Jane Doe Two, who was twelve years old at the time of the incident. In the middle of the night, he woke Jane Doe Two up and whispered for her to come in his direction. She complied and sat between his legs for a massage as Mr. Thomas directed. Suddenly, he slid his hand under her t-shirt and touched her breast as he used his other hand to touch the rim of her underwear. Jane Doe Two screamed and he pleaded with her to not tell anyone.
The case against Mr. Thomas was successfully prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Melissa Demetral, with assistance from Assistant District Attorney Leslie Cogan and District Attorney Investigator Rich Niven. Victim Advocate Cindy Pelayo worked closely with the survivors throughout the case. Prosecutors were able to develop a strong case against Mr. Thomas because of the outstanding investigation of the San Francisco Police Department’s Special Victims Unit.
“This case is a testament to the power and strength of sexual assault survivors,” said Assistant District Attorney Melissa Demetral. “Not only were they incredibly brave to report the abuse, but they also persevered for years as the case made its way through the justice system. They stand together as seven fierce women to reclaim their power, a power that the defendant took from them for so long. I am truly honored to have met and worked with every single one of them. The defendant’s conduct in this case is truly deplorable. And this plea reflects the gravity of his conduct.”
Mr. Thomas is currently in custody pending sentencing. Sentencing is scheduled for February 6, 2024.
If you or a loved one is in need of support, please seek help. In an emergency call 9-1-1 for help.
Below are some resources for support:
- San Francisco Women Against Rape 415.647.7273
- Rape Trauma Services 650.692.7276
- Rape Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN) 800.656.4673
Court Number: 11014220