A man assaulted his ex-girlfriend and threatened to kill her in front of their two-year-old daughter at the weekend, a court heard.
Keiran Mander, 23, appeared before Swindon Magistrates’ Court – after being remanded in custody since his arrest – where he pleaded guilty to four charges of assault by beating, criminal damage, breach of a restraining order and malicious communications.
It’s the Crown’s case that the defendant, of Vockins Close, Tidworth, sent messages to his former partner threatening to turn up at her home on the St Peter’s Place housing development in Salisbury.
Prosecutor Ben Worthington said the victim and the pair’s daughter recently moved to the area after leaving a refuge and Mander was not given the address. Following the incident, she told the police she believes he managed to obtain her address from someone he knows who lives in the same building.
On Saturday afternoon (20 March), the defendant turned up at her home where he was acting erratically, drinking bottles of wine and possibly taking drugs.
There was a confrontation where he accused her of sleeping with other men. Subsequently Mander’s taken her mobile phone, which she managed to get back and use to send messages to people asking them to call the police.
He then threw the phone on the floor, causing the screen to smash. As his victim attempted to pick up the phone and he grabbed her by the arms – causing bruising – before pushing her to the floor.
The pair’s daughter – aged two-years-old – witnessed the incident. It’s said Mander threatened to kill his former partner, and stated (about their daughter): “she’s going to be gone as well”.
Police officers arrived at the property and arrested Mander.
The court heard he had previously breached a restraining order imposed on him in relation to his ex-girlfriend in August 2020, which resulted in him severing a custodial sentence. As a result, the restraining order was extended until September 2021.
It was heard how the relationship ended about two years ago, but was on-and-off.
Michelle James, of the National Probation Service, told district judge Joanna Dickens that Mander had been attending post-sentence supervision appointments and was currently undertaking an assessment for ADHD.
Defending him, solicitor Richard Williams said his client had gone to the address to try and see his child, but things ‘got out of control’.
He claims the defendant was given a key to her home and that the victim invited him over, but things had become complicated by a new boyfriend of the complainant.
“I’m not going to send you to prison to, I should do, but I’m not going to”, judge Dickens said.
Continuing: “Even if she did invite you over, you can’t go there because that’s what the [restrinaing] order says. This is the court order, the court order is you can’t contact her, end of story.
“If she contacts you, you just have to ignore it. That’s the situation. If you reconcile and get back together, then of course you both have to make an application to remove the order.
“She can’t be using orders as a toy, I agree that she shouldn’t be. What you have done in this situation is not only breach the order but you have assaulted her as well, and you’ve also stopped her using her phone and damaged that phone.
“Domestic violence is always serious, it’s serious in this case because there’s a previous conviction in relation to Miss [Redacted], it’s serious because domestic violence is usually hidden. People don’t normally report it, so it’s a very dangerous crime for that reason. And secondly, it’s a breach of trust.
“Clearly it’s serious enough for a prison sentence, but I’m not going to send you to prison today because I think you’re so young, you’re 23, that you can probably… work with probation for the next two years and try and work out strategies that will help you deal with it.”
She imposed a total of 20 weeks imprisonment suspended for two years for the restraining order breach, the assault and criminal damage. He was also told the complete 40 days of rehabilitation activity requirement days.
Judge Dickens also extended the restraining order until March 2024.