Caregiver jailed over assault
The Palmerston North caregiver who succumbed to his "sexual feelings" and assaulted a foreign student in a public toilet says women who wear short skirts "are asking for it".
Because of this, and previous offending against his wife, Pounani Tahore, 46, was not considered suitable for home detention and was instead sentenced to 7 1/2 months’ jail on a male assaults female charge.
During sentencing in Palmerston North District Court yesterday, defence lawyer Richard Bedford asked for community detention to be considered so Tahore could care for his disabled wife.
‘‘The defendant and his wife both very much hope that could be the case.’’
Tahore was reluctant to stay in prison as he feared for his safety, Mr Bedford said.
But Judge Gerard Lynch said jail was the only appropriate sentence, especially after Tahore told a doctor that ‘‘women who walk past in short skirts are asking for it’’.
Tahore’s upset wife was unimpressed and yelled at the judge from the public gallery, saying the sentence was unfair: ‘‘How can I cope without him, tell me that?’’
On May 30, Tahore followed a Korean exchange student into the women’s toilets at the Downtown Shopping Centre in Palmerston North.
He approached the victim from behind and wrapped his arms around her in a ‘‘bear hug’’ before trying to pull the woman into a toilet cubicle.
She struggled and managed to get to the bathroom door and yell for help.
She then got away completely and ran for safety. Tahore was found a few hours later.
‘‘You told police you’d been having sexual feelings and had been thinking about sex,’’ the judge told him.
Tahore also said he was hearing voices in his head that told him to assault the woman.
When interviewed for a pre-sentence report, he admitted to having ‘‘sexual feelings’’ on a regular basis, especially when he saw women in public.
Tahore has already been sentenced for several burglaries and admitted he entered people’s homes to look for someone to have sex with.
Because of this, the judge ordered Tahore to undergo a psychiatric test and it was found he was affected by foetal alcohol syndrome and was of ‘‘limited intelligence’’.
His offending was fuelled by alcohol and he was remorseful when sober.
Tahore was also convicted on a theft charge for stealing a cask of wine from a supermarket on July 26.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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