A Somali sex attacker who tried to murder a stranger in an attack that would ‘send a chill down the spine of anyone’ travelling home late at night is facing life behind bars.
Sabir Sharife, 31, spotted his victim after she mistakenly took a bus to Hackney, east London, as she made her way home from a night out with friends.
Sharife stalked the woman through the streets armed with a large serrated knife before sexually assaulting her in the early hours of April 9.
He then stabbed her repeatedly in the face, neck, upper chest and left arm.
The woman bravely managed to fend of the sex beast before flagging down a passing car.
She then collapsed due to loss of blood, the Old Bailey heard.
Sharife, who arrived in the UK from Somalia more than a decade ago and has indefinite leave to remain, has eight previous convictions for affray, assault and outraging public decency.
He showed no emotion as a jury convicted took just over seven hours to convict him of attempted murder, sexual assault and having a bladed article.
Judge Usha Karu ordered psychiatric reports but warned: ‘Life imprisonment may well be one that I consider as a sentence.’
Prosecutor Sarah Campbell told jurors: ‘I’m afraid the facts of this case will send a chill down the spine of anyone of you who has travelled home late at night in London.
‘In the early hours of 9 April this year just before 3.30am a woman was attacked by a man who had armed himself with a knife who had followed her.’
Sharife was prowling near his address at the Shuttleworth hostel in Well Street when he first spotted her.
CCTV footage captured him following her onto a night bus and leering at her on the top deck as they travelled north of the capital.
Once she got off the bus a passer-by asked the victim if Sharife was bothering her when he saw him following her in a ‘creepy way’.
The victim told him that she was okay when he followed her through Brooke Road in Stoke Newington.
But as she turned the corner into Rectory Road the pervert grabbed her by the jeans and pulled out the knife.
‘She thought he was going to rape her, he drew it across her throat connecting with her chin,’ added Ms Campbell.
She was stabbed several times before she managed to break free from his grip and scream for help.
Ms Campbell said his intent ‘can only have been to kill her’, adding. ‘He only didn’t do it because of the resistance that she was able to put up.’
Sharife tried to dump the knife and the jumper he was wearing before returning home just after 4am.
His DNA, CCTV footage and Oyster card evidence linked him to the attack, but the victim could not identify him and admitted she was drunk.
Sharife insisted that it was a case of mistaken identity and denied the charges.
But a jury rejected his version of events and convicted him of attempted murder, sexual assault and having a bladed article.
Sharife was remanded in custody ahead of sentence, on a date to be fixed.