A bully who squeezed his partner’s chest so hard on Christmas Day he broke her rib has walked free from court.
Control freak Aidan Ratcliffe subjected his partner to a series of incidents in which he caused her pain and emotional upset. Newcastle Crown Court heard how the behaviour began months after he suffered an industrial accident in which 12,000 volts were said to have surged through his body.
The first incident happened on Christmas Day 2019 when Ratcliffe squeezed his then-partner’s chest so hard he broke a rib, which happened in the presence of a child. Another time she bought a puppy and said if she went to the shop the dog would not be there when she got back. He also regularly shouted and screamed at the dog.
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He regularly demanded money and locked her out until she gave him it. When she got a new phone he put his email and Google account in his name.
On another occasion he punched a hole in the bathroom door because he told her she had been in there too long.
One day, when she was recovering from surgery, she asked him for a drink and he bounced a cigarette lighter off her head and called her lazy.
Another time, she was helping her son do homework and he pulled her away, telling her to leave him alone. When she told him it was physical abuse, he said “no it’s not if I punch you, you will fall to the floor and call the police and I will call an ambulance”.
On another day he told her not to vacuum and pushed her in the stomach at the point where she’d had surgery, causing pain. Even after the relationship had ended, he wouldn’t leave her alone, repeatedly trying to contact her by phone.
Ratcliffe, 32, of Corporation Road, Sunderland, was convicted in his absence of controlling and coercive behaviour. Recorder Brian Whitehead sentenced him to 46 weeks suspended for 18 months. He was also given a five-year restraining order and must do a “building better relationships” programme.
Shada Mellor, defending, said he’d had an industrial accident a few months before the offences in which 12,000 volts “surged through his body” and said he was “lucky to be alive” having suffered burns and was left with PTSD as a consequence of what happened.