Sinister stalker assaulted stranger and left condoms and body butter outside her home

The court heard the following month the man posted a pornographic DVD through her letter box.

A sinister stalker who sexually assaulted a stranger and left chocolates, jewellery, condoms and body butter outside her home has been locked up.

David Revell made the woman's life a "misery" with constant unwanted gifts and would bang on her ground floor bedroom window while she was inside.

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Newcastle Crown Court heard the terrified victim was groped on her doorstep, followed through the streets and police ended up installing covert cameras and a personal safety alarm in a bid to protect her.

Revell, who continued his stalking campaign despite being arrested twice, left the woman so traumatised that she was afraid to even put her bin out in case he was lurking around. The loner insisted he never intended to frighten her and had simply become attracted to her.

Revell, 55, of Kenton Road, Kenton, Newcastle, admitted sexual assault and stalking.

Mr Recorder Nicholas Lumley KC jailed him for three years and said: "It would be a grotesque understatement to say you made your young female victim's life a misery. In fact you preyed upon her for your own sexual purposes such that you have caused her the sort of mental suffering from which she may never fully recover.

"You wouldn't leave her alone, it was all about you."

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Prosecutor Omar Ahmad told the court: "The defendant began posting unopened packs of condoms through her letterbox, in addition to leaving chocolates.

"She was initially unaware who left these items but on one occasion there was a message 'call me' and a phone number left."

The court heard when the woman returned home one evening she encountered Revell outside, which made her "startled". He then sexually assaulted her by grabbing both of her breasts with both hands.

Revell was arrested and interviewed, denied any wrongdoing and was released under investigation but within hours he was back outside the victim's home.

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Mr Ahmad said: "She was in her bedroom on the ground floor and heard a knock on the bedroom window. She realised her curtains were not fully closed. On making her way to the front door, she observed him walking away."

The court heard the following month Revell posted a pornographic DVD through her letter box.

A few weeks later the woman heard banging on her bedroom window again, followed by banging on the front door.

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Mr Ahmad said: "She observed the defendant stood outside her address. She ignored him and he eventually left. However, the following day she found a small trinket box with a charm and other pieces of jewellery."

The court heard more jewellery was left over the following weeks, including a bracelet, watch and necklace.

Revell then followed the victim when he saw her walking to a bus stop and when she returned home she found a bag hanging on the handle of her front door which contained curtains, body butter, a gift box and some deodorant.

Mr Ahmad said: "Due to the number of incidents she reported to the police, the police installed covert cameras at her home address, one on the window and one in the spy hole of her front door."

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Revell was captured on the footage standing outside making gestures towards her house. On one occasion he had removed his penis as he did so.

The court heard Revell followed the woman again when he saw her in the street and she contacted the police who advised her to return home.

Revell was arrested again then released on bail and he approached her once more before. The woman said she was left scared to put her bin out and lived in consant fear of being followed or chased.

Sue Hirst, defending, said Revell had lived a quiet life but added: "He was lonely having been single for a number of years.

"He was drawn to her and attracted to her.

"He wasn't trying to frighten her, he had become attracted to her."

Miss Hirst said Revell has health problems.