A convicted rapist on day release from prison went on to carry out a terrifying knifepoint sex attack threat after disappearing from his work placement during his lunch hour, Lincoln Crown Court heard.
Nicky Suddons was carrying out painting and decorating work on a church property in the centre of Grantham while serving a life sentence at North Sea Camp open jail.
David Outterside, prosecuting, told a jury that Suddons left the project during a lunch break and made his way through Grantham to the town’s Queen Elizabeth Park.
He then lay in wait in a wooded area before confronting a middle-aged dog walker as she made her way along a footpath.
Suddons, who was wearing a black mask and armed with a craft knife, stood just three feet from the woman who fell to the ground after becoming tangled in her dog’s lead.
She screamed, ignoring Suddons’ demand not to do so, and then her dog barked and lunged at Suddons who fled the scene.
Two passersby went to the aid of the woman including a cyclist who set off after Suddons and stopped him near to the park exit.
The man accompanied Suddons back to the scene and despite his denials Suddons was arrested after police carried out a check and discovered he was a convicted sex offender.
Mr Outterside said that Suddons carefully planned the attack taking a balaclava, rubber gloves, a knife and condoms with him to the park.
He told the jury: “What was on his mind was rape. This time he was prepared and was absolutely determined not to be caught. He thought he could get clean away with it but he was caught red-handed.”
Suddons 26, formerly of Abbey Hey, Manchester, denied attempt rape on 28 June but was convicted by the jury after less than an hour’s deliberations.
He admitted to the jury that he attacked the woman but denied having any sexual intent. He claimed he wanted to “control” her.
The jury was told he was jailed for life at Manchester Crown Court in September 2005 after admitting one rape and six sexual assaults involving attacks on seven women and girls in East Manchester during 2004.
He said he had changed since the earlier offences and was now a different man.
Judge Sean Morris remanded him custody for the preparation of a psychiatric report and an assessment of the danger he poses to women. He will be sentenced at a later date.
The Justice Secretary Chris Grayling has promised a full investigation into the case.
In a statement he said: “This is a truly horrifying case and one that needs to be investigated thoroughly. I have already asked my officials to review how this scheme is working across the country and for the Chief Inspector of Prisons to look into how temporary release was granted in three cases earlier this year.
“I’m determined to get to the bottom of what went wrong and to take forward any lessons learnt from the reviews I have commissioned. In future when people are released on temporary licence I want to see them tagged so we can better monitor where they are and where they have been.”