Skelmersdale man attacked partner as toddler slept

A man who assaulted his partner while their toddler slept nearby has been given a community order.

Thursday, 17th October 2019, 9:21 am
Wigan and Leigh Magistrates' Court

Curtis Forrester, who was living at Birleywood in Skelmersdale at the time of the attack, was found guilty of assault by beating following a trial at Wigan Magistrates’ Court.

The 37-year-old, who has since “left the area”, had been in a relationship with the victim for around seven years when the incident happened in July.

The court heard the couple, who had three children together, briefly separated in 2018 but eventually started seeing each other again although she wouldn’t let him back into the house.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Despite the couple making amends the victim said that Forrester “stayed the same” as before.

Shortly after she was diagnosed with depression.

She described to prosecutors how Forrester would monitor her social media accounts and text messages and how he would start arguments in front of the children.

“Nothing would calm him down,” prosecutor Alan Bakker said. “At the beginning of the year she said she wanted to take driving lessons. He wasn’t happy. He said he would drive her anywhere she wanted to go. She was a shadow of her former self constantly living on the edge.”

On the day before the assault the pair went to Blackpool for their daughter’s birthday.

Mr Bakker said Forrester was angry because he wanted the victim to take “numerous” pictures of the two of them together and post them on social media but she was reluctant.

The following day the victim was at home when the defendant turned up and was ordering her to open the door.

The terrified woman said she “thought she was safe” because she had locked the doors so she ran upstairs to the bedroom to close the window in case he tried to get in. During this time the couple’s two-year-old was asleep upstairs.

“She heard footsteps running up the stairs,” added Mr Bakker. “He grabbed her by the hair on both sides of her head.”

She told the prosecution that the pain was “searing” through her skull as he clenched his fists.

During the attack her grabbed her by the upper arm and dragged her off the bed. At one point he saw her mobile and a message saying police were on the way. This is when the attack ended.

Forrester initially denied the charges but was convicted following a trial.

David Lacide, defending, reminded the court that his client was only convicted of one count of assault.

“He didn’t and was never questioned about previous incidents,” he told District Judge Mark Hadfield. “He wants to maintain contact with his children.”

The judge said Forrester had shown “little remorse” and that carrying out the assault when a child was present was an aggravating feature.

Forrester was given a 12-month community order with 100 hours’ unpaid work and 15 days’ rehabilitation activity. He was ordered to pay £350 costs, £250 compensation and a £90 in victim surcharge. he was also hit with a 12-month restraining order.