A man who held a 20-centimetre knife to a woman’s throat while demanding she perform sex acts on him on New Year’s Day 23 years ago won’t serve time behind bars for the crime.
David Kenneth Gilchrist, 51, has already spent more than 14 years in jail for other offences committed in the 1990s and been subject to supervision after his release.
Brisbane District Court Judge Geraldine Dann said Gilchrist’s offending was “extremely serious”, but she took into account the prison term already served and the way he has turned around his life.
The court heard the 33-year-old woman woke to find Gilchrist sitting on her bed holding a knife to her throat, telling her not to scream.
He had a facial disguise so only his eyes were visible and socks on his hands.
Gilchrist had climbed through a window which the woman opened after returning to her home in the New Farm suburb of Brisbane from a New Year’s Eve party about 5am.
When she tried to flee Gilchrist straddled her holding the knife in one hand, while choking her with the other. He then forced her to perform oral sex on him.
Before leaving Gilchrist told her it was pointless to call police as there would be no fingerprints.
But in 2018 officers reopened the investigation, finding Gilchrist’s DNA matched samples taken after the 1997 crime.
“You told police you didn’t remember committing the offences as you were involved in a number of burglaries around the time of the offending and were drinking heavily,” Judge Dann told Gilchrist when sentencing him on Monday.
Gilchrist had been in jail for forcing another woman at knifepoint to perform sexual acts in her house in 1995.
In 1997 he pulled an 18-year-old woman from a footpath near a train station before threatening her with a knife while instructing her to give him oral sex.
Gilchrist pleaded guilty to one count each of entering a house with intent, deprivation of liberty and indecent assault.
Judge Dann sentenced Gilchrist to a head sentence of three years in jail, wholly suspended for four years.
Australian Associated Press