It was dark and the Finnish tourist was alone. She got off the train at Middlemore and Nelson Ogle followed.
He'd been drinking and wanted her to go to the pub with him.
She told him no and pleaded with him to stop following her, but he didn't listen and grabbed her as they passed a driveway, putting his hand over her mouth and briefly around her neck before she struggled free.
Today Ogle, 32, was jailed for six and a half months at the Manukau District Court for the assault in South Auckland. The sentence is to be served cumulatively with another 10-month sentence for breaching a protection order.
A year to the day since the assault took place on January 13, the court heard how Ogle met the Finnish tourist at the Britomart station where they chatted then he got on the same train.
They had another short chat during the journey and about 10.30pm, the woman got off at Middlemore station.
She asked Ogle "numerous times" for him to stop following her but he persisted.
According to the summary of facts, the woman stopped in a driveway and Ogle grabbed her, putting his hand over her mouth and momentarily around her throat before attempting to push her to the ground.
Although the woman lost her glasses in the struggle, she was able to escape and ran away.
In the days after the assault, police asked the public to help them identify the man and released CCTV images of Ogle, ending in his arrest on January 18.
Reading the woman's victim impact statement, Judge John Bergseng said the attack had clearly "ruined" the tourist's trip to New Zealand, whereafter she suffered flashbacks.
She also didn't tell her family what had happened because she didn't want to worry them, which made her feel like she was being dishonest, the judge said.
"Reading between the lines, it's clear that she appreciated New Zealand was not the same place that she originally thought it was."
While he was on bail for the male assaults female charge, Ogle breached a protection order against a former partner and again was arrested but was remanded in custody.
He was also sentenced on a charge of disorderly behaviour relating to an incident on Fort St when he was asking people to fight him.
Since then, Ogle has accepted that he has a problem with alcohol and had taken steps to address the issues by completing two programmes, his lawyer Rowena Smith said in court today.
"He's realised he's made some very poor decisions under the influence of alcohol."
Judge Bergseng said the details of the assault against the tourist made for "concerning reading".
"Mr Ogle there are very worrying aspects to your offending, particularly given the fact you were prepared to approach a complete stranger at night ... alcohol is not an excuse or a mitigating factor."
If Ogle didn't address his alcohol problem, chances are he'd be back before the courts again, the judge said.
Ogle was sentenced to 10 months in prison for the protection order breach after uplifts for offending on bail and his criminal history but a reduction of one and a half months for his guilty plea.
On the male assaults female charge, Ogle was sentenced to six months in prison after a one and a half month reduction for his guilty plea.
On the grounds of totality, Ogle was jailed for 16 months in total, ordered to pay $280 to the victim of the breach of a protection order with his release conditions including non-association with the victim and participation in programmes to address his alcohol and anger issues.