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Former policeman Matthew Cherry, jailed for beating up pregnant girlfriend, to appeal
8:48am Monday 15th October 2012 in Crime
THE SOUTHAMPTON policeman jailed for attacking his pregnant ex-girlfriend in an attempt to destroy their unborn child has lodged an appeal to overturn his conviction and sentence.
Matthew James Cherry, who was as serving police officer in Dorset, was found guilty last month of attempting to cause grievous bodily harm with intent and jailed for 10 years.
The 35-year-old, of Wimpson Lane, Millbrook, broke down crying when the jury delivered their verdict.
The court heard Cherry wore a balaclava, hoodie and gloves when he attacked six-monthspregnant Caroline Craft in her flat in Norwich Avenue, Bournemouth, on March 24 last year.
Cherry punched her in the face, stomach and back between 20 and 30 times in an attempt to bring on the miscarriage of the baby he did not want, the jury were told.
Prosecutors said Cherry had tried to persuade fellow police officer Miss Craft to have an abortion, claiming he could not afford the child.
Miss Craft suffered extensive bruising following the attack but thankfully her unborn child was unharmed. She went on to have a healthy baby boy called Archie, who is now 16 months old.
Cherry had been working as a patrol officer in Poole for nine years when the attack on Miss Craft happened. He resigned from the police in November last year and was living in Wimpson Lane before he was jailed.
Sentencing him, Judge Keith Cutler said: “It was a pernicious and evil act on your part. There was a high degree of planning.
“It was clear you used your skills and training as a police officer to ensure your mobile phone was left to give yourself an alibi and to mask your appearance.”
Cherry’s application for leave to appeal his conviction and sentence will go before a single judge at the Court of Appeal at a date to be fixed.