A man who invited his ex-partner back to a hotel room to, ‘chill out’ before smashing her head into the wall, punching her, and attempting to strangle her and holding a pillow over her face, has been jailed.
Jake Harvey’s ex agreed to accompany him back to the Sporting Lodge Hotel, in Middlesbrough, on January 30, despite a restraining order which prohibited him from contacting her. But once in the hotel room, Teesside Crown Court has heard that Harvey, 23, “flipped”.
He downed vodka and began to “throw things around the hotel room including a chair and a glass bottle.” On Wednesday, prosecutor Rachel Masters told told the court that the former couple had been sitting on the bed chatting about their son and the fact that Harvey was prohibited from seeing the child by social services, when he lost his temper.
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“The defendant punched his ex-partner to the face. He delivered six hard blows before she became disorientated and threw up. The defendant grabbed her hair and banged her head against the wall three times.
“His ex-partner told him she wanted to leave. The defendant said, ‘Not until I kill you first.’
“The defendant grabbed her by her neck and held his hand over her mouth. She was struggling to breathe and extremely scared. Then he held a pillow to her face.”
Ms Masters said that the woman managed to lock herself in the bathroom, but Harvey kicked the door in. She eventually got out of the room, but not before Harvey had pulled her top off and continued to tell her that he was going to kill her.
The court heard that when the woman was sitting down in the corridor outside the room, with a towel around her to cover her, Harvey tried to drag her back into the hotel room. The victim managed to get away and alert staff who called the police.
The prosecution said that Harvey caused £696 of damage to the hotel room; he left the bathroom door off its hinges and damaged the kettle and TV. The woman suffered “significant swelling to her face”; a red mark around her neck; and that cuts and bruises were all over her body.
Harvey, of Outram Street in Middlesbrough, pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm, criminal damage and breaching a restraining order.
The court heard that he has 14 previous convictions for 25 offences – the most recent of which included battery and stalking against the same victim, in 2020. Harvey served time in prison and was made subject to the restraining order.
Police found Harvey walking away from The Sporting Lodge and arrested him. Officers said he was drunk and aggressive and denied ever being at the hotel before later claiming that his ex had attacked him and any injuries she had sustained were caused by him defending himself.
Kelleigh Lodge, defending, told the court that her client wants to apologise to his ex-partner. Ms Lodge says he still has feelings for her but accepts that she may not want to see him once any new restraining order ends.
Harvey was taken into custody on January 31 and has remained behind bars since – but Ms Lodge told the court that he has “made full use of his time there” by working with the mental health team on his difficulties.
He has also completed a health and safety course and has been working in the prison recycling department. Ms Lodge said that whilst Harvey accepted that he had breached his restraining order, his ex-partner had agreed to go to the Sporting Lodge with him.
Judge Ray Singh told Harvey: “You attended the night club where she was. You invited her to “chill out”. She says you flipped. You punched her to the side of her face with full force.
“You grabbed her by the hair and pushed her against the wall with such force she thought she might pass out. When she ran into the bathroom, you kicked the door in.
“You grabbed her by the neck, strangling her on the bed and held a pillow to her face. You tried to pull her back into the room, calling her a ‘s***’.
“This was a prolonged and persistent attack”. The judge jailed Harvey for two-years and imposed a five-year restraining order.
He told Harvey to expect an immediate custodial term if he breaches the new order. Harvey, who appeared in court on video link from prison asked the judge: “Can I just say one thing?”
“No”, the judge replied.
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