Teenage domestic violence victim is scared to leave the house

FRIGHTENED .... Shannon Harvey.

FRIGHTENED .... Shannon Harvey.

A TEENAGE domestic violence victim says she is still living in fear after being assaulted by her fiancé.

Shannon Harvey, of South Shields, was left with a broken nose and a fractured jaw when her partner, Liam Foster, turned violent.

The 18-year-old says she’s scared to leave her home in case she meets her ex in the street, after he walked free from court.

Foster, 23, of Boldon Lane, South Shields, – the home they shared – was charged with, and admitted assault by beating on Thursday, May 8, when he appeared at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.

He was given a 20-week sentence, suspended for two years, and made the subject of a restraining order.

He also had to pay £500 compensation.

The maximum sentence is six months and a fine of up to £5,000.

Miss Harvey, an administration apprentice, believes the sentence was inadequate and says she, as the victim, is suffering more.

She said: “He’s walking the streets but I’m scared to.

“I don’t know what to do. I haven’t been out of the house since then because I’m scared that I’m going to bump into him.”

“As soon as I got the phone call to say he had a two-year suspended sentence, I just broke down in tears.”

Miss Harvey was left with a broken nose and a fractured jaw from the attack.

The co-ordinator of South Tyneside domestic abuse charity, Options, Julie Robinson, backed Miss Harvey.

She said: “This sentence doesn’t fit the crime but should not deter other victims to come forward and report any incident of domestic abuse.

“We would always encourage all victims to report any incident including harassment and intimidation.

“We would also encourage victims of abuse to come forward and seek help.”

Miss Harvey, an administration apprentice, first met Foster, originally of Hendon, Sunderland, at a house party when she was 17.

The pair entered into a relationship in October, last year, and moved in together in Houghton-le-Spring.

Magistrates heard Foster, who launched his attack after returning home from a drinking session tried to get her to lie to the police about her injuries.

The court heard Foster grabbed his teenage partner by the throat and punched her in the face, then told her to tell police her injuries were caused by an intruder breaking into the house.

Sarah Guest, prosecuting, said: “He had gone out to Green Baize Pool Club, in Boldon Lane, South Shields, at 7.30pm and she had stayed in watching TV before going to bed.

“He came back at 2.10am saying he had won a pool tournament and told his partner to make his tea. She said they would talk in the morning.

“He became angry and pushed her onto a bed and grabbed her by the throat. He punched her in the face and there was a splatter of blood from her nose.”

She said another occupant of the house had called the police.

She added: “He said to her ‘if a copper asks, say it was a stranger’ and tried to convince her to lie to the police and say someone had broken in and attacked her.”

Dan Pygall, defending, said: “My client is disgusted by what he has done. He is so disgusted and ashamed of his actions, he wanted to plead guilty straight away.

“He is remorseful and wanted to plead guilty and hold his hands up.”

Twitter: @shieldsgazvicki


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