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Thursday, 24 April 2014

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Young girl saw dad launch violent attack on mum, court told

A mother described to a jury how her estranged husband held a knife to her throat and threatened to stab her in front of their small daughter.

The woman, at times breaking down as she spoke, was giving evidence in his trial at Carlisle Crown Court.

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has denied threatening to kill her, assaulting her so that he caused actual bodily harm, and a further charge of a common assault on the child.

He has accused his estranged wife of making up the allegations.

Prosecutor Brendan Burke had earlier outlined the case against the man, telling the court that the alleged attack was not the first time the defendant had been violent.

Describing the events leading up to the charges now faced by the defendant, Mr Burke said he had spent time with the couple’s daughter that day and then dropped her off at her mother’s home.

The child had an upset stomach, and during the evening her mother tried unsuccessfully to contact the defendant by text. When he did not reply, she sent a message to a woman with whom he wanted to have a relationship and who she thought he may be with.

This made him extremely angry, said Mr Burke

In her evidence, the woman described what she said happened when he turned up at her Carlisle home later that evening.

“He literally picked me up and slammed me against the wall,” she said.

She recalled her clothes being pulled and ripped by him.

She said he punched her as their daughter, hysterical, kept saying: “Please stop it daddy – don’t hit mum.”

After she picked up the child, he pushed the woman into the lounge and then went into the kitchen and picked up three knives.

She said he told her he was not sure whether to smash her face through every window, kill her, or kill them both.

The woman claimed that he told her: “If you get out of here you won’t be recognisable, or you won’t be alive.”

She said he told their daughter that she could watch while he killed her mum.

The child became so upset that she hyperventilated. The woman said she pleaded with the defendant not to be violent in front of the child.

The trial continues.

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