A DELIVERY driver convicted of violently assaulting his former partner repeatedly flouted a court order that had banned him from contacting her.

Carlisle Crown Court heard that the restraining order was made after 53-year-old Rod Gordon carried out a “sustained” assault on his partner in Whitehaven in November, 2018.

An earlier hearing was told that he had dragged the woman from a couch to the floor before repeatedly punching her to the head.

He then sat on her chest, preventing her from escaping.

She was only able to escape after a concerned neighbour came to the woman’s house door, the court was told.

When police questioned Gordon about what had happened, he refused to comment. But as a result of his conviction for that serious assault, a court imposed a restraining order, which meant he was banned from having any contact with her.

“The week after it was made, he breached it by contacting [her],” prosecutor Alaric Walmsley told the court.

“Although the defendant was not threatening, she said that if she didn’t answer quickly, she would be bombarded with voicemail messages.

“She would reply to try to appease him.” If she failed to reply, said the prosecutor, Gordon would not stop calling.

He repeatedly tried to contact her, sending messages by a variety of methods - voicemail, WhatsApp, and text messages, said Mr Walmsley.

Last year, he sent her a total of 727 emails. The messages arrived “continually” throughout the year.

Every time she blocked his number, she would get calls from another private number. To break the cycle, she would replay every so often so she could continue with her life.

“This continued until August when she contacted the police,” said Mr Walmsley. “She’d had enough of being frightened,” continued the lawyer.

Sean Harkin, for Gordon, now living at Macclesfield, suggested the victim was “acquiescent” in what happened.

The lawyer said: “He’s got a job as a takeaway delivery driver and he is capable of staying on the straight and narrow. He just needs help.

“He’s not had that help through nobody’s fault because it’s not possible for the Probation Service to deliver it during the pandemic.I’d ask for second chance [for the defendant.”

Recorder Simon Killeen said the defendant, who admitted breaching the court order, seemed to have a history of “bad behaviour,” said the judge.

He referred to the sustained assault on his former partner, which left her bruised and with a split lip. She had to relive the experience in a trial. “You were given a chance, I am sure, because of your lack of convictions,” said the judge.

He had no doubt the judge who passed the original suspended sentence told Gordon he could be jailed if he breached his order. The restraining order was to protect Gordon’s victim, who suffered post traumatic stress.

Recorder Killeen jailed Gordon for 13 months.

* Domestic abuse victims can call the West Cumbria Freedom Project support helpline on 07712 117986. Or call 999 if there is immediate danger.