Man tied up woman to 'watch suicide'
A man who says he tied a woman up to make her watch while he committed suicide has been jailed for 10 years.
The man invaded the woman's home, threatened her child and grandchild, tied her wrists and sexually violated her in March 2012.
The 44-year-old admitted burgling her home and kidnapping her by unlawfully detaining her, and was found guilty at the end of his Christchurch District Court jury trial of assaulting her, threatening to kill the children and sexual violation.
Crown prosecutor Karyn South said there had been planning and premeditation.
He had waited outside for several hours before he entered the Christchurch home at night.
He had been in breach of two trespass orders and a protection order.
Judge Gary MacAskill said the invasion took place over six or seven hours, and ended when the woman's daughter and partner arrived in the morning.
The man fled but left behind his cycle helmet and door keys.
Defence counsel John Brandts-Giesen said the man apologised for the conduct he admitted, although he did not accept the jury's verdict.
The man had maintained the sex was consensual.
"Because of his emotional stuntedness, he misreads cues that other people take for granted," he said.
The man maintained that he had intended to make the woman watch while he committed suicide using her medication.
He had tied her up for that purpose.
Judge MacAskill said the man had sought to punish the woman by causing anxiety and distress.
It was doubtful that he intended to carry through with his suicide, he said.
The man had made the woman fear for the safety of the children and had intimidated her into submission by his conduct, which included punching her and tying her up.
"You took away her feeling of safety in her home and made her feel powerless to protect her family. She has decided to sell her home because it reminds her of what you did that night," the judge said.
The man had a list of convictions dating back to 1984, including convictions for assaults and aggravated assaults.
The judge imposed a one-year uplift on the man's sentence, because of his prior offending, for an end sentence of 10 years, and he gave the man a first-strike warning, which imposes heavier sentences on repeat violent offenders.