Sex attacker tried to rape teenager days after release

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SERIAL sex offender David Sutherland tried to rape a teenager just days after he was released from prison.

He attacked the 18-year-old woman as she was walking home at 7pm on Christmas Eve, telling her he had a knife.

The assault, in the car park in Civic Centre Way, near Fareham Borough Council’s offices, only came to an end because two women interrupted.

Sutherland ran off while the women consoled the victim.

He was arrested a short while later and admitted to the police what he had done.

The 24-year-old is now facing an indeterminate sentence for the public protection (IPP) after pleading guilty to a charge of attempted rape at Portsmouth Crown Court.

That means he will not be released from prison until the parole board decides he is safe to go back into society.

Prosecutor Matthew Lawson said Sutherland had been jailed for five-and-a-half-years at Winchester Crown Court in December 2005.

He received the sentence for a string of offences, including two rapes, two sexual assaults and four sexual offences involving children between 2002 and 2005.

But five days after his release Sutherland, of Trinity Street, Fareham, struck again.

At the time he was on a five-year licence, meaning he would be recalled to prison if he committed any offences.

Judge Richard Price said Sutherland was clearly a dangerous offender.

‘The attempt, thank goodness, did not come to fruition,’ he said.

‘There’s no doubt that he is fairly and squarely within the dangerousness provisions.

‘It’s not difficult for an experienced judge to understand the sort of trauma through which the victim will have gone.

‘It’s pretty obvious what the impact on her was. She was absolutely terrified.

‘I dare say that she now finds it difficult to go out on her own and understandably so.’

The judge remanded Sutherland in custody to be sentenced next week and warned him he faced an IPP.

Matthew Jewell, defending, said: ‘The victim has plainly found it a very traumatic experience and quite understandably so. I can’t say anything other than this young man is dangerous.’