Attacker followed his victim for a mile before assault in city alleyway

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A WOULD-BE sex attacker who followed his victim for a mile before assaulting her in an alleyway has been jailed.

Liam Nicholas was sentenced yesterday after the court heard he pursued a young woman from Guildhall Square in Portsmouth before grabbing her from behind and pulling her to the ground in the early hours of August 31, 2016.

Portsmouth Crown Court heard that Nicholas assaulted the woman and attempted to pull her trousers off, but 
she was able to make her 
escape after lashing out at her attacker.

The incident was reported to police and Nicholas was arrested the same day.

The father of a young family was subsequently charged with committing an offence with the intention of committing a relevant sexual offence.

Nicholas, of Meriden Road, Southsea, pleaded guilty to the offence at previous hearing.

He was sentenced to three years four months in prison by Recorder David Bartlett.

The judge imposed an indefinite Sexual Harm Prevention Order.

Detective Inspector Adam Edwards said: ‘This was a particularly nasty assault in which the victim was gripped in a headlock and physically beaten before Nicholas threw her to the floor and tried to pull off her trousers.

‘We are pleased that the victim has found justice now that Nicholas is behind bars, and I applaud the quick work of our detectives who made the arrest less than 24 hours after the incident.

‘I hope the outcome of this case reassures members of the public that we take allegations of this type of offence extremely seriously, and will do everything in our power to bring offenders before the courts.’