The trial of a man in his 40s, who is accused of forcing his way into the home of a woman he knew, before pulling a clump of her hair out, and punching her in the face, has begun in the Royal Court.
Daniel Charles Cornish (46), who is charged with one count of illegal entry and one count of common assault, denies the allegations brought against him.
The accusations, which centre on an incident alleged to have taken place in March this year, were read to a jury of seven women and five men on the first day of Mr Cornish's Royal Court trial yesterday.
Crown Advocate Julian Gollop, prosecuting, began proceedings with a speech in which he explained that, on the day in question, the pair had been spending time together at the woman’s address. However, when an argument broke out between them, he said that she asked Mr Cornish to leave.
Pictured: Crown Advocate Julian Gollop is leading the prosecution case.
It’s accepted that both of them had had around four cans of strong lager each.
After the woman had been out of her flat to run some errands, she returned home when she claims Mr Cornish started knocking on her front door and she insisted that he should leave.
The prosecution asserts that, as Mr Cornish didn’t appear to be able to hear the woman, she opened up the kitchen window a little to tell him again to leave and it was at this point that a physical struggle ensued.
The woman claims that Mr Cornish forced his way through the window, and that he then began to pull her hair, forcing her to floor, trying to restrain her when she attempted to call the Police and punching and smacking her to the face.
Taking the stand to give evidence about the alleged attack, the woman recounted her version of events from that day for the Court.
Pictured: The alleged victim in this case took the stand to give evidence against Mr Cornish.
She said that Mr Cornish “made his way in” and “there was hair pulling, there was arguing” before she “fell back onto the sofa and then it got even more violent."
The alleged victim then recalled being “punched” on the right side of her face and “smacked” on the other side and that she was “screaming 'help'."
She also told the jury that she pretended to see a neighbour through the window to try and get Mr Cornish to stop, eventually managing to get her phone and escape the house.
When asked by Crown Advocate Gollop if she remembered how long the incident lasted, the woman said: “No, I can’t. I was in a complete state.”
She said that she then saw Mr Cornish running past her and that he got into his car and drove off.
The Crown Advocate then took the witness through a bundle of photographs taken of her injuries by a Police Officer the next day.
She said that all of the injuries – including a cut to her forehead, swelling to her cheek and various areas of bruising and abrasions on her body – were caused by Mr Cornish on the evening in question.
Cross-examining the witness, Mr Cornish’s lawyer, Advocate Jeremy Heywood, asked her if she considered herself “an honest person” before bringing up parts of her own criminal record.
Pictured: The witness was asked about her own criminal record.
She accepted that she’d been convicted for theft and perverting the course of justice, but then asked about the “relevance” of the question: “Why is it me being put under the microscope?”
Advocate Heywood asked her about previous encounters between herself and his client, as well as putting Mr Cornish’s version of events to her.
The Advocate asked her if it was actually the case that she had started the argument between them, and Mr Cornish had left the address to allow for her to calm down. He then suggested that they’d had a conversation at the window and that she had allowed Mr Cornish to come through this way before she decided to call the Police. He also put it to her that Mr Cornish never assaulted her in any of the ways that she described.
The witness denied each suggestion from defence counsel and maintained her account of events.
The trial continues this morning.
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