Sex, stabbing attack man makes progress

Michael Chilcott (27) was sentenced to nearly a decade in prison for a violent and sexual attack...
Michael Chilcott (27) was sentenced to nearly a decade in prison for a violent and sexual attack on a woman in her home. PHOTO: ODT FILES
A man who knocked on a stranger's door before groping her and stabbing her in the neck is making "considerable progress" behind bars.

Michael John Chilcott (27) was jailed for nine years and nine months before the Dunedin District Court in 2013 and appeared before the Parole Board for the second time last month.

Because he was midway through the Drug Treatment Programme, the prisoner did not seek early release.

However, the board and prison officers were impressed by the strides he had made while locked up.

Chilcott's principal Corrections officer confirmed that after some behavioural issues early in his sentence, he was now well behaved.

He described the prisoner's approach to rehabilitation as "outstanding".

Initially Chilcott had denied there was a depraved motive behind his offending but that was no longer the case.

"He has now moved considerably on from that point and he reconfirmed today that he accepts that there was a sexual motivation involved," panel convener Judge Neil MacLean said.

Chilcott turned up at his victim's Duncan St flat out of the blue asking for a glass of water and she let him into the house.

He responded to her kindness by striking her from behind with a coffee mug, punching her and pushing her into her bedroom.

Chilcott threatened to harm her child if she was not quiet.

He then molested the woman before pulling out a pair of scissors and stabbing her around the face and neck.

The attack continued as Chilcott tried to choke her and smother her with a pillow.

At sentencing, the victim said she believed it was only her judo training that saved her life.

The woman suffered three stab wounds to the front of her neck - the largest of which was 5cm wide and 5cm deep - a 4cm deep cut to her face and three behind her ear.

The Parole Board heard Chilcott had completed 11 sessions with a psychologist which focused on his underlying sexual issues.

"The psychologist noted that a graduated release plan, including such things as guided release and the like, would be essential," the report said.

Chilcott was supported by two people at the hearing - including a long-standing pen pal - and the board was told there was accommodation and paid employment awaiting the prisoner on release.

Judge MacLean asked for a psychological report to be made available at the next parole hearing in February next year.

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