A DISTRICT judge has banned a Carlisle man from seeing his long-term partner for a month following an allegation that he threatened to burn down her home.

The comment was reported to Cumbria Police on June 1 - the latest in a series of alleged abusive behaviour by 45-year-old George Kirkpatrick towards the woman, his partner of 20 years.

He was also previously accused of hitting her with a claw hammer, though he was never charged. At Carlisle’s Rickergate court, Cumbria Constabulary applied for a 28-day domestic violence protection order to give the woman "space."

Barrister Samuel Watson, for Cumbria Constabulary, questioned a detective about the background to the case.

The officer outlined how the trigger for the application was a 101 call which was made to Cumbria Police in which the caller claimed that Kirkpatrick had threatened the woman, saying he would burn down her house.

Because the woman refused to support a prosecution, police decided there could be no further action. This was 'commonplace' in such alleged domestic abuse cases, said the officer.

Kirkpatrick, of Brownrigg Road, Carlisle, had previously been given three domestic violence protection orders because of similar allegations. 

Since the last order was imposed in June of last year, said the officer, there had been three occasions when Kirkpatrick had caused the woman bodily harm. “Mr Kirkpatrick used a claw hammer to strike [the woman]… it caused injury,” the officer told the court.

Mr Watson said the purpose of the order was to provide the woman with “space” when she could seek support and advice.

The police officer in court said the defendant was known to be a user of drugs and alcohol, and this increased the risk he posed.

Under questioning from District Judge John Temperley, the officer said the trigger for the application had been the threat allegedly made by Kirkpatrick to burn down the woman’s house.

Though that was reported by somebody other than the woman, Kirkpatrick’s partner had called the police two days later asking for him to be removed from her home.

The woman was also now engaging with professionals in an attempt to address her mental health.

Granting the order for 28 days, the District Judge said: “I am satisfied on the balance or probabilities that he has threatened violence towards her.

“I am just about persuaded to grant this application in the hope that it may bear some fruit."

The primary condition of the domestic violence protection order is that it bans Kirkpatrick from contacting the woman or going to the street in Morton, Carlisle, where she lives. 

* Kirkpatrick was not in court for the hearing, which was a civil application and not a criminal prosecution. His alleged behaviour has not been proved in a criminal court.

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