A soldier who grabbed his partner by the throat and refused to let her take any pain medication as she lay in hospital giving birth to their child has been jailed.
The 24-year-old regularly tried to ‘humiliate and degrade’ the woman, who cannot be named, over a 16-month period between September 2019 and January this year.
He gave her a list of daily promises she had to stick to, made her ask permission before going to the toilet, demanded she send recordings to prove where she was, and even forced her to hit herself, York Crown Court heard.
His controlling and abusive behaviour continued even as she went into labour, prompting worried midwives at Harrogate District Hospital in North Yorkshire to call the police.
Judge Simon Hickey sentenced him to 18 months and imposed a 10-year restraining order banning him from contacting the victim.
He told the defendant: ‘This was not only a vulnerable young woman but a young woman in labour. There cannot be a more vulnerable position for a woman to be in.’
Prosecutor Matthew Collins told the court the woman had been cut off from her family during the relationship and left scared to go outside.
In a personal statement, she said the controlling behaviour had affected her mental health and caused her anxiety to worsen.
She said her appetite was poor and she was having trouble sleeping, as well as trusting other people.
Mr Collins said social services are now involved with her and her child, which she said was ‘very unfair and traumatic’.
The soldier, who admitted coercive behaviour and assault, has a previous conviction for domestic violence.
A probation officer who assessed him reported that he posed ‘a high risk to future partners’.
Defending, Kevin Blount said the man was ‘remorseful’ and steps were being taken to terminate his Army career.
The solicitor added: ‘He is extremely keen to receive help and he has expressed that from the outset.
‘He would wish to apologise to the victim and to express his remorse and very sincerely regrets he has acted in this way and the harm he has caused her.’
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