Belfast Telegraph

Man accused of raping and shaving off the hair of his pregnant partner

By Alan Erwin

A Belfast man allegedly raped his pregnant partner and shaved off her hair amid accusations of infidelity, the High Court has heard.

Prosecutors claimed he also split open her eye and tried to glue the wound shut while on a three-day Crystal Meth drugs binge.

Details emerged as the 30-year-old accused, who cannot be named for legal reasons, applied for bail.

He denies four counts of rape and two charges of assault occasioning actual bodily harm to his long-term partner.

The alleged attack was carried out at an address in west Belfast last November, but only reported to police in January.

According to the prosecution he started accusing his partner of sleeping with other men after using a tracking device to monitor her emails and where she had been. He allegedly warned that if she didn't confess he would shave her like before, the court heard. A Crown lawyer said the woman, who was three months pregnant at the time, began to admit things in a bid to save her hair.

It was claimed the man told her she would have to get an abortion before cutting off her pony tail with nail scissors.

He then allegedly produced electric clippers, held her down on the sofa and shaved off her hair as she tried to fight him off.

Prosecution counsel said: "He told her if she tried to run, a bullet would be put in her head and she would be put in a ditch.

"He also said he was going to get the girlfriends of the men (with whom) the injured party had admitted cheating to come down and assault her, and he would gladly watch."

The woman claimed her partner had been taking Crystal Meth before his assault.

During the alleged assault he punched her at least twice to the face before attempting to seal a deep cut to the eyebrow with Superglue, the court heard.

The prosecutor went on: "He said he wouldn't touch her again as she now had a year and a half to think about what she had done to him, as that's how long it would take for her hair to grow back."

Madam Justice McBride was told the man then dragged her into the bedroom, ordered her to strip and said that he "owned" her.

It was claimed that he then repeatedly raped her.

After her partner fell asleep the woman fled into the street in her pyjamas and got a taxi to the Royal Victoria Hospital, where her wounds were stitched, the prosecution submitted.

The barrister added: "She said that due to the state she was in they didn't even charge for the taxi."

Following his arrest the accused told police the couple had been partying at a friend's flat over a six day period, the court heard.

He denied taking drugs and insisted they had consensual sex during that period.

He claimed the woman made the rape allegations up because she is mentally ill.

Defence counsel Jonathan Browne challenged the strength of evidence against his client.

He argued there were serious discrepancies in the complainant's account, telling the judge that the couple reconciled and spent six weeks together after the date of the alleged rape.

Mr Browne also contended that the accused only discovered during police interviews that he may not be the unborn child's father.

Adjourning the bail application, Madam Justice McBride suggested that revelation may heighten concerns about possible re-offending.

She also asked for more information from police on claims that the couple were living together after the alleged attack.

Belfast Telegraph

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