Bulwell man told woman: “I have just battered your sister”

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Magistrates have heard how a woman took a phone call from a Bulwell man, who shouted: “I have just battered your sister.”

The man, Paul Hobster (40), appeared at Nottingham Magistrates Court this week to be sentenced for assaulting his girlfriend, Michelle Boyd, at their Bulwell home.

The court heard that the offence came to light when Michelle’s sister, Emma Boyd, rang the police immediately after receiving the call from Hobster at about 5.10 pm on Sunday 23rd June.

“Emma said Hobster was angry and screaming down the phone,” said Judith Kirkham (prosecuting).

“He said: I am coming after your three-year-old son. I am going to kill him. By the way, I have just battered your sister.”

Twenty minutes later, a police officer duly visited the address where Hobster and Michelle lived and heard an argument raging inside.

“When Michelle answered the door, she appeared frightened and had two bruising injuries around her eye,” said Mrs Kirkham.

Hobster was subsequently arrested and charged. He went on to deny the assault, but he was found guilty after a trial, held last month.

This week’s sentencing hearing was told that Michelle “couldn’t be bothered” to attend the trial and didn’t want Hobster punished. However, sister Emma had attended, as well as the police officer, and the magistrates had accepted their evidence as reliable.

David Hallmark (defending) said Hobster’s relationship with Michelle had lasted several years but had been “marked by significant alcohol problems”.

“The relationship has now been terminated,” said Mr Hallmark. “He has not seen her since this incident and has moved away from the area to live with a friend elsewhere in Nottingham.

“He is a hard-working family man with three children.

“The injury to Michelle has been attributed to him, but how is still open to speculation.”

District Judge Leo Pyle read a probation report on Hobster and also a reference from his employers in the removals and storage business.

However, after considering the defendant’s previous record of domestic violence, Mr Pyle rejected the suggestion that he serve a community order.

Instead he sentenced Hobster to 16 weeks in prison, suspended for 12 months, with a requirement for supervision by a probation officer.

A restraining order was also imposed on him, prohibiting him from making contact with Emma Boyd for two years. Hobster was told to pay costs of £250 and a victim surcharge of £80.