A MAN who groped a Mandurah Forum cleaner in the disabled toilet was sentenced to 18 months jail when he appeared in Mandurah Magistrates Court today.
Aaron James Collyer (23) appeared via video link from prison and had previously pleaded guilty to unlawful and indecent assault and common assault.
Police prosecutor Tamara Read said the 49-year-old victim was cleaning a toilet near the food court on October 26.
She said Collyer went into the toilet and was wearing a hood over his head to conceal his identity.
Sen Const Read said the cleaner feared for her safety. She said Collyer put his open palm between the cleaner’s legs and squeezed her genitals several times.
Collyer ran out of the toilet and the victim gave chase.
Sen Const Read said Collyer pushed a trolley into the victim’s stomach, but she continued to run after him, yelling and screaming.
A security guard came to help the victim and struggled with Collyer.
Duty lawyer Clare Hay said Collyer did not remember the incident.
She said Collyer felt remorseful and was ashamed of the incident.
Magistrate Anne Longden said it was a disturbing incident that would have been frightening for the victim.
“To her credit she gave chase and was not prepared for you to get away with what you’d done,” Ms Longden told Collyer.
She said Collyer had previous convictions with sexual overtones and his offending was escalating.
Ms Longden said the incident was too serious for a suspended term of imprisonment because the risk to the public was too high.
Collyer’s jail term was backdated and he is eligible for parole.