Report by James Franklin , Reporter
Thursday, April 26, 2012
A WOMAN said she was left frightened for her life when her partner launched a vicious attack on her in her home.
James Attwood was jailed for eight months following the attack on Tanya Bishop at her home in Worle, and is not allowed to contact her until 2015.
At a trial on April 19, magistrates at North Somerset Courthouse heard that Attwood and his victim had had an on-off relationship for about two years.
On March 10, Ms Bishop had been at a friend’s house in Vicarage Close for most of the day and had exchanged several texts with 26-year-old Attwood.
Speaking behind screens at the trial, Ms Bishop said their texts had started off normally, but he had then sent one saying she was a ‘liar’ and implying that she was not with her friend but with another man.
She said her friend had bought her a takeaway, and she had left Vicarage Close at about 9.40pm to go home. As she drove down the close she spotted a hooded figure which turned out to be Attwood. He was walking in the same direction as her further down the road, blocking her passage.
As she turned into Madam Lane Attwood got into the car on the passenger’s side and, grabbing her by the neck, pushed her head hard against the window of their car.
He threw her takeaway out of the window before ordering her to stop so he could drive.
Ms Bishop said he then drove them at about 40-50mph back to her home in Dormeads View, Locking Castle, jumping a red light on the way.
Once at her home, Attwood twisted her arm before pushing her head down into the cushions on her sofa.
He then punched her in the head several times, saying to her: ‘You’re lucky I don’t do it more to you or you’d end up in hospital’, before smashing a Nintendo DS and a stereo.
She said: “I told him to stop, I was very frightened.”
She told the court that she had managed to get him out of the house by saying she needed his phone to see if she had left hers at her friends.
When he went to his car to fetch his mobile phone, Ms Bishop called her friend and told her to contact the police.
Attwood came back into the house and locked the door, but police arrived and took him into custody.
At the trial Attwood, of St Pauls Road, denied one charge of common assault, assault by beating and criminal damage, with defence lawyer Paul Light saying Ms Bishop had fabricated the attack in order to get him arrested.
But the magistrates at the trial disagreed, and imposed an eight-month prison sentence and placed a restraining order on him forbidding him from contacting Ms Bishop for three years.