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But the Parole Board stressed 31-year-old Samuel Anderson would only get early release once he completed a programme to address his violent tendencies.
In September 2019, Anderson was jailed for four years, five months on four counts of assault with intent to injure, one of threatening to kill and one of supplying a class B drug — all of which were committed while Anderson was on parole for earlier offending.
A graphic police summary detailed how the man would beat his ex-girlfriend unconscious before splashing water in her face to revive her, then continuing the abuse.
The victim told the court at sentencing the ordeal had left her with post-traumatic stress disorder and she spent time in a coma after a suicide attempt.
The couple had only been together a couple of months in February 2018, when the pattern of abuse began.
Anderson head-butted her, knocking her unconscious, then brought her round again only to punch her in the face.
Weeks later there was another sadistic episode.
A dispute over a cellphone led to him pinning her down, pulling her fingers back, trying to gouge her eye, elbowing her in the face, slamming his knee into her tailbone and forcing a pillow against her face.
The relationship ended when Anderson tried to strangle the victim and she bit him on the arm, resulting in him seeking hospital treatment.
At a later meeting, the court heard, the defendant accused her of seeing another man and threatened to kill both of them, before punching her in the face several times.
The victim escaped as Anderson went to get a hammer.
At a hearing last month, the Parole Board heard the Otago Corrections Facility inmate had completed the drug treatment programme and supported other prisoners as a mentor.
While Anderson was "keen to be released" and had approved accommodation, panel convener Judge David Mather said the anti-violence course was necessary given the man’s background of serious violence.
The prisoner will see the board again in March next year — five months before his sentence expiry.