Paul Taylor murder trial: Jury told accused Nicola Lee 'stabbed former boyfriend'

A woman accused of killing her partner with a knife through the heart had stabbed a previous boyfriend and made weekly death threats to him, murder jurors have heard.

Tuesday, 8th October 2019, 4:44 pm
Updated Tuesday, 8th October 2019, 5:02 pm
Paul Taylor.

Nicola Lee, 44, is on trial accused of the murder of Paul Taylor, 45, during an argument at her home in Jarrow, South Tyneside, on March 31.

Jurors at Newcastle Crown Court have heard evidence from Lee's ex-boyfriend, who prosecutors claim was a "victim of domestic violence" at her hands.

The man, who gave his evidence to police in a video recorded interview, which has been played to the jury, said he was the victim of verbal and physical abuse by Lee.

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He said Lee, who he ended up "frightened" of, attacked him when they were on their first date and that she had stabbed him with a fork during their five-year romance.

He said: "The first time we went out for a drink in a bar in Hebburn she pushed me and afterwards said she felt sick."

The man said Lee would tell him he was "the nicest guy in the world" but her "trigger" for violence could be anything.

He told police: "The first signs of any kind of abuse was more mental, degrading me about the size of my privates, degrading me about me weight, I had put on weight."

The man said Lee would "strike out" at him and added: "The first time I remember getting hit I was in the house and she punched me in the face.

"I can honestly say I never hit Nicola back, I never rang the police. I might have rang the police but I don't think I did. Other people rang the police."

The man said Lee used "weapons and fists" on him and added: "The first time she used a weapon on me was we got into an altercation in the kitchen, I can'tremember why.

"I did restrain her, I bit her thumb. She got staples.

"We ended up outside, she stabbed me in the leg with a fork."

The man said neither of them pressed charges over the incident and Lee had once threatened him with a garden fork, which he said "would have done damage" but said he could not remember why.

He told police Lee had poured turps over him and herself and he had to take a lighter from her during that incident, which resulted in the involvement of emergency services.

The man told police: "The trigger could get anything and that's the truth, it could be something on the telly.

"It could be 14 or 15 hours of verbal abuse."

The man said Lee had warned him "I will kill you" and he added: "From her, I would take it serious.

"Yes, she's a woman but I'm actually frightened of her."

The man said Lee would "escalate from verbal to physical" and added: "I'm not lying when I say basically every week she threatened to kill me."

He added: "She would just rip me to bits with her mouth.

"Sometimes I did react and shout back, I'm not saying I didn't and yes I did restrain her but you have a right to defend yourself."

The man said he was bitten, punched and scratched during a final confrontation when he was invited into Lee's home after their breakup and added: "I never went back".

Lee, of Thames Avenue, Jarrow, denies his murder and claimed Mr Taylor stabbed himself.

The trial continues.