A JUDGE jailed an “evil pervert” for six years after he hatched a plan to sexually assault a hospital worker in her own home.
Balaclava-clad former soldier Arran Benjamin Ebbs, 24, was standing over his intended victim as she slept on her sofa but she woke up and screamed in terror.
Ebbs, of Stratford Road, Blacon, had only been out of prison for six months after a near-identical sexual assault on a female colleague at the Dale Barracks.
Ebbs was jailed for two years and kicked out of the Royal Welch Fusiliers after he crept under her bad and touched her privates in 2011. Chester Crown Court was told Ebbs admitted he was planning to do the same thing when he entered the home of the Countess of Chester Hospital worker early on July 14.
Matthew Corbett-Jones, prosecuting, said the intended victim fell asleep about 11.30pm while working on her computer.
He said: “Some of the curtains were open and she was visible through the window.
At 2.15am the complainant woke up and noticed that the light had been switched of and she heard a door being opened and closed.
“She began to feel unsettled, saw a pair of males shoes, and looked up to see a man standing before her wearing a balaclava and black gloves.”
The court heard the woman was terrified and scremed out, with Ebbs putting his finger to his lips and beckoning her towards him.”
Mr Corbett-Jones said Ebbs asked her whether anyone else was in the property and became agitated before breaking down in tears with his head in his hands, telling the woman he was there as part of a hoax. Ebbs pretended to have a heart attack but afterwards it was discovered he tried to lock the flat door from the inside.
Mr Corbett-Jones said the woman offered to get him a drink, but then texted a male colleague for help. He arrived and confronted Ebbs, who ran off but police arrested him soon afterwards.
Richard Thomas, defending, said: “He deeply regrets what he was about to do, although there was no physical contact made.”
Judge Elgan Edwards, the Recorder of Chester, said the offence was “gravely serious” and said he considered giving Ebbs an indeterminate sentence.
He commended the actions of the male colleague who helped to bring Ebbs to justice. Judge Edwards awarded the colleague £500 from the High Sheriff's fund for his bravery.
Judge Edwards told Ebbs: “You didn’t have any physical contact with this woman but you went far enough and put into effect your evil plan.”
Ebbs was jailed for six years, banned from working with children for life, made the subject of a sexual offences prevention order and told to sign the sex offenders register.
The judge told him it was a “disgraceful act” on a young woman. “Suddenly she finds you masked in a balaclava in her room with the object of sexually penetrating her. It must have been a very frightening ordeal. The word pervert comes to mind,” he said.