KING’S LYNN: Man strangles partner in front of their teenage child
A man who strangled his partner in front of their 13-year-old child was told he could have almost been facing a murder charge.
Artis Igaunis squeezed Valda Ozolina’s throat with both hands, and told her if she called the police he would “kill her”, Lynn magistrates heard.
The vicious attack at the family’s Lynn home was witnessed by the couple’s 13-year-old son, who shouted at his father to stop.
But Igaunis continued the assault, punching his partner in the face as the youngster fled to the kitchen to phone the police.
The 30-year-old Latvian, of Valingers Road, Lynn, appeared before West Norfolk Magistrates’ Court on Friday and admitted assaulting Miss Ozolina on September 27.
Sentencing him, the chairman of the bench, Janice Smith, said: “This was a very serious offence, which could have been a murder charge.”
Igaunis was sentenced to an 18-month supervision order, with 200-hours unpaid work.
Magistrates also imposed a restraining order, banning Igaunis from any contact with Miss Ozolina for 18 months.
Yvonne Neill, prosecuting, described the incident as a “sustained attack” which involved “two-handed strangulation”.
She told the court: “The parties had an argument at home and the defendant grabbed hold of her throat and squeezed. She tried to push him away but she landed on the floor.
“He grabbed her throat again and she said she was going to call the police. He said if she did, he’d kill her.
“He pushed her in the bedroom and grabbed her throat again and said ‘I’m going to shorten your life by doing this’.”
In mitigation, Jeff Lewis said Igaunis doesn’t accept everything that happened, but admits he was responsible.
He was also a man of “previous good character”.
MAGISTRATES COULD HAVE SENT THE DEFENDANT TO PRISON
Yvonne Neill, prosecuting, said the offence was a “category one” common assault, which is when “greater harm” and “higher culpability” are present – and can attract a sentence of up to 26 weeks’ in custody.
But magistrates followed a recommendation in pre-sentence report for a high-level community order (150-300 hours of unpaid work).
Chairman of the bench, mrs janice smith, said:
“You will carry out 200 hours of unpaid work which reflects the seriousness of the offence.”
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Saturday 25 May 2013
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