Disabled woman in all-night sex attack

LYN HUMPHREYS
Last updated 05:00 01/04/2014

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A disabled woman says her life is ruined and she never again wants to see the man who subjected her to an all-night sexual ordeal in her home.

The victim, in her 50s, knew her assailant.

She had cared for him in the past, taking him in when he needed help.

In the New Plymouth District Court yesterday Malcolm Telford Henry, 37, was sentenced to 8 years in jail and handed a strike warning.

He pleaded guilty at an earlier appearance of three representative charges of sexual violation by rape and two of sexual violation by unlawful sexual connection on October 13, 2012.

Fourteen other charges relating to the attack were withdrawn.

The court heard that Henry, a Nomads gang affiliate, was grossly intoxicated when he arrived on his victim's doorstep about 1am.

When she answered the door, he kissed her and took her to her bedroom, undressing her.

In the following eight or so hours he threatened her and subjected her to continuing sexual assaults. At times she was in excruciating pain and crying but too frightened of him not to do as he wanted.

The attack only ended when a nurse visited the victim in the morning.

The court heard that Henry had been assaulted by his brother earlier in the night, leaving him with a broken eye socket.

Henry contacted police who picked him up on a suburban road in New Plymouth and took him to Taranaki Base Hospital for treatment. Henry left the emergency department. Police gave him another ride, dropping him near his victim's house.

Crown prosecutor Bridie Sweetman asked for a starting point of 12 years' jail because of the premeditation of the attack and vulnerability of a frail woman with mental health issues.

In her written impact statement to the court, Henry's victim said he had ruined her life and she would forever need counselling.

Henry's defence lawyer, Paul Keegan, accepted the attack was serious offending but asked for a start point of nine years' jail with a 15 per cent reduction for the guilty pleas and an uplift of six months for his previous convictions which he noted were not sex-related.

Judge Allan Roberts described to the court the extensive sexual assaults Henry put his victim through.

The victim was left with bruising on her breasts, legs and arms and underwent blood tests because Henry was a hepatitis carrier.

In the past 20 years Henry had amassed 90 convictions, 49 of which were prison terms. The latest were his first for sexual offending, the judge said.

His pre-sentence report noted Henry said he had no recollection of the events that night and was ashamed of his actions.

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The report, which recommended prison, noted his association with the Nomads.

The attack had an enormous impact on his victim's life, the judge said. She still had nightmares and struggled with anxiety.

"It hurts her that while she helped you when you needed it, you abused her. She hates you and does not wish to see you again."

His intent was clear the moment he crossed the threshold of her house. His victim was a vulnerable, simple woman who underwent medical monitoring.

"Physically she was no match for you," Judge Roberts said.

Starting with a 9-year prison sentence, the judge elevated it for previous offending, also noting Henry was subject to prison release conditions at the time.

A concession for the guilty plea gave an end sentence of 8 years' in jail.

- Taranaki Daily News

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