A court heard how Ryan Lafferty’s teenage victim was so traumatised she had to give up her studies, suffers nightmares and is still receiving treatment for depression.
She was punched repeatedly as she screamed for help after Lafferty pounced in Glasgow’s west end.
When the 19-year-old woman continued to shout, Lafferty, 23, dragged her down stairs to be further from the street.
Sentencing him at the High Court in Edinburgh, judge Lady Scott told Lafferty: “This was the kind of violent assault which puts all women in fear of going out at night and robs them of their freedom of movement.”
The judge noted the student was a passing stranger. “Your immediate predatory response on seeing this young woman alone was very disturbing.”
Advocate depute Neil Beardmore, prosecuting, told how CCTV cameras showed Lafferty hiding behind a van as the student walked past, then starting to follow her.
As she crossed a grass verge in Glasgow’s Lilybank Gardens, Lafferty grabbed her and pushed her to the ground. After punching her repeatedly, he dragged her to a flight of steps.
Mr Beardmore said Lafferty ignored her when she begged him to stop and, when the woman began to scream again, he punched her face again.