‘I was tricked’ police officer tells court

Matthew Cherry

Matthew Cherry

First published in Crime

A POLICE officer accused of attacking his ex-girlfriend and their unborn baby believed he’d been “tricked” into getting her pregnant, a court heard.

Matthew Cherry, 35, pictured, of Wimpson Lane, Millbrook , Southampton , is accused of attacking fellow police officer Caroline Craft, when she was six months pregnant with their child, by repeatedly punching and kicking her in her stomach and face in a bid to harm the unborn baby.

Cherry, who was cross examined by prosecutor Matthew Jewell at Winchester Crown Court, yesterday, is alleged to have launched the “frenzied”

attack after gaining entrance to Miss Craft’s Bournemouth flat, at Norwich Mansions, on March 24 last year.

The defendant broke down in the witness box briefly after telling the court: “I didn’t go anywhere near Norwich Mansions on that day...I did not attack Caroline.”

Earlier, Mr Jewell read out a mobile phone text message to the court, which Cherry had sent to a friend after first learning Miss Craft – his girlfriend at the time – was pregnant. It read: “I don’t want kids full stop. It makes me physically sick to have been tricked like this.”

The prosecution alleges Cherry, a police officer of nineand- a-half years, attacked his ex partner after failing to pressure her into agreeing to an abortion.

They say he forced his way into her flat wearing a balaclava, hoodie and gloves.

Miss Craft, who was punched and kicked 20 to 30 times, curled into the foetal position to protect her unborn child. Despite suffering substantial cuts and bruises, neither her nor her child were seriously injured.

Cherry denies attempting to cause grievous bodily harmwith intent.

Proceeding .

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