A man who attempted to sexually violate a tourist in Westport in June has been sentenced to four years and eight months in prison, without parole.

In Westport District Court yesterday Tandy Gabriel Bryant Robertson, 34, pleaded guilty to a charge of assault with intent to commit sexual violation.

Robertson also pleaded guilty to altering a document and breaching bail.

A charge of threatening to kill was withdrawn.

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Judge Jane McMeeken said Robertson had invited a tourist to his room on the afternoon of June 12. There he helped her fill out a job application, as English wasn't her first language.

He knelt in front of her and began kissing her knees. She said "No" and he put a sock in her mouth.

He climbed on top of her and she tried to fight him off and called for help. He put his hand over her mouth and said, "Do you want to die?"

She broke away and he grabbed her, lifted up her top and put his hand down her pants.

She escaped and ran down the street where members of the public saw her.

She suffered injuries to her hands, lip, tongue and mouth.

The victim impact report showed she also suffered psychological injuries. She had feared for her life and had been robbed of her sense of security. She said her life had now changed.

Judge McMeeken said Robertson also breached bail this February and altered a cheque the previous May.

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He would receive a second strike warning for the assault charge. His first strike was in July 2012. That meant he would have to serve his entire sentence without parole eligibility. The maximum penalty for the most recent offence was 10 years in prison. Defence lawyer Tony Bamford said a pre-sentence report showed Robertson acknowledged the trauma caused by his offence and understood the victim had been fearful. He knew his behaviour had been reprehensible, wanted to apologise and hoped the victim could put it behind her.

Judge McMeeken said aggravating factors relating to the offending included the level of pre-meditation; Robertson had invited her to his house pretending to help her. The effect on the victim had also been profound. Violence had been inherent in the offending.

Other aggravating factors were his previous conviction for assault, male assaults female, and indecent assault.

Robertson had also offended while on bail, having failed to appear in court and with a warrant out for his arrest.

Mitigating factors were his early guilty plea, remorse, and the fact that he'd taken steps to improve himself while in custody.

Judge McMeeken sentenced Robertson to four years and eight months in prison on the assault charge.

On the charge of altering a document she sentenced him to four months in prison, to be served concurrently.

She convicted and discharged him on the charge of breach of bail.

- Westport News