Violent Harrogate man jailed for attacking pregnant girlfriend

A violent brute has been jailed for attacking his pregnant partner and threatening to endanger the life of her unborn child by trying to punch her in the stomach.

Monday, 22nd March 2021, 11:55 am
Updated Monday, 22nd March 2021, 11:56 am

Stephen Paul Macdonald, 36, went ballistic during an argument over a games console at his flat in Harrogate, where he punched and slapped the terrified woman and threatened to “imprison” her, York Crown Court heard.

Macdonald mocked her “disabilities” and called her names, then told her: “If I hit you (in the (stomach), you will lose the baby.”

Stephen Paul Macdonald, 36, was jailed for 12 months at York Crown Court.

The victim protected her stomach with her arm as she “screamed” for help, said prosecutor Brooke Morrison.

Macdonald told her she could “scream all she wanted because no-one could hear her”.

Ms Morrison said the “petrified” woman, who was named in court, thought she was going to die.

Police were called to Macdonald’s flat on Bramham Drive after neighbours heard the commotion.

When officers arrived, the woman was crying and highly distressed. She had a throbbing head and reddening and bruising to her thigh.

Macdonald gave police a false name. He was arrested but initially denied the assault.

Ms Morrison said the “sustained” assault was compounded by the “gratuitous degradation of the victim by (Macdonald) calling her names, mocking her disabilities and threatening to imprison her”.

She said the victim’s disabilities could generally be described as “special needs”.

In a statement read out in court, the victim said she was “petrified I was going to lose my baby that night”.

“I keep waking in the early hours,” she added.

“I don’t want to leave the house now. I was petrified and spoke to the doctor about the effect (the attack) could have on my baby.

“(Macdonald) said he wanted me to lose (the baby) that night. I thought I wasn’t going to live. He also said he was going to get other people to hurt me.

“I’m really concerned about my safety in my own home now and I want to move away from the area.”

She said she never wanted to see Macdonald again and often broke down in tears.

Macdonald was charged with assault and breaching a restraining order which had been imposed in February 2019 to keep him away from the victim. He ultimately admitted both offences and appeared for sentence via video link on Friday.

The court heard that although Macdonald and the victim had previously split up, they had rekindled their relationship after the restraining order had been imposed.

On January 24 this year, the victim went to Macdonald’s flat and they were having a perfectly pleasant time until Macdonald started drinking. He flew into a rage when the victim upbraided him for giving away a games console that belonged to her friend.