Belfast Telegraph

Man allegedly smashed ex-partner's head off stairs and shouted 'I will murder you'

A man broke into his ex-partner's home, smashed her head off stairs and held a pillow over her face saying: "I will murder you", the High Court heard today.

Damien McGuinness is accused of battering the woman after kicking in the front door of her house in Derry.

Prosecutors revealed that police were called by her father after he heard the alleged attack over the phone as it was taking place.

McGuinness, with an address at Courthouse Chambers in the city, faces charges of burglary with intent to commit grievous bodily harm, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, threats to kill and criminal damage over the incident last Friday.

The 24-year-old was granted bail but banned from any contact with his ex-partner.

Police discovered her crying uncontrollably and with cuts all over her body, according to prosecution barrister David McClean.

Blood stains were found throughout the house in the city's Waterside area.

The woman claimed she had managed to get inside and lock the door when McGuinness approached her, only for him to kick through a door panel and gain entry.

"The injured party stated the applicant assaulted her in the home by smashing her head off the stairs," Mr McClean said.

He added that McGuinness is further alleged to have dragged the woman around, put a pillow over her face and said: "I will murder you."

The accused was arrested at the scene with blood on his clothes, the court heard.

He said the couple had been in a volatile 18-month relationship, and claimed she fell when he pushed her during a scuffle.

Defence barrister Barry McKenna told the court they have now split, and raised an issue over alleged infidelity.

But Mr Justice Horner stressed there were no excuses for the alleged "vicious, intolerable" assault.

Granting bail for McGuinness to live at an address in Eglinton, the judge also prohibited him from entering the city except for his work.

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