Belfast Telegraph

Alleged murder bid victim allowed to live with accused wife Zoe Crowe

Zoe Crowe
Zoe Crowe

A woman charged with attempting to murder her husband with a knife was only intent on self-harm, he told the High Court today.

Zoe Crowe is accused of trying to kill Maurice Ferguson - a senior officer at Maghaberry Prison - during a domestic incident on November 22.

But Mr Ferguson claimed he sustained the wounds during a bid to disarm her.

He said: "I believe she was going to self-harm in front of me."

Crowe, whose address cannot be published due to reporting restrictions, faces charges of attempted murder, common assault and possessing an offensive weapon.

Prosecution counsel Kate McKay said police went to the scene following reports that a man had been slashed with a knife.

Crowe, herself a former prison officer, claimed he had punched her, the court heard.

Officers then located Mr Ferguson in an upstairs bedroom, distressed and with wounds to his hand and chest.

He had claimed Crowe had confronted him at the front door after he had been out drinking with colleagues, according to Mrs McKay.

It was alleged that she then attacked him with the knife upstairs.

He was taken to hospital for treatment to injuries including a collapsed lung.

Crowe has been living at the matrimonial home, with a ban on contacting her husband who was staying at another location.

The case was back in court to seek permission for them to live together again.

Giving evidence, the alleged victim detailed concerns for his wife's well-being.

"My motivation is to keep her safe," he insisted.

Defence barrister Stephen Toal acknowledged the unusual circumstances, but contended there was a risk to Crowe while on her own over the Christmas period.

He added: "Clearly this man still loves his wife, and when this case is over, regardless of the result, they will be a married couple again."

Based on the man's evidence Mr Justice Huddleston agreed to vary the bail terms.

He ruled that the couple can live together again, with a condition imposed that Crowe must abide by a full alcohol ban.

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