Burgess Hill man given three years for violent assaults on ex-partner
A Burgess Hill man has been sentenced to three years imprisonment for violent assaults on his ex-partner.
Anthony Benwell, 38, unemployed, of Valebridge Drive, Burgess Hill, was sentenced when he appeared at Hove Crown Court on Thursday 26 October, having pleaded guilty at a previous hearing to causing grievous bodily harm and actual bodily harm to the 36-year old woman with whom he had been in a volatile and intermittent relationship over several years.
He was given two and a half years for the GBH and six months for the ABH, to run consecutively, making three years in total.
At a previous hearing Benwell was also given an indefinite Court Restraining Order prohibiting him from any further contact with the woman.
Officers were called to the World's End area of Burgess Hill at 8.40pm on Friday 21 April after reports that a man had been attacking a woman. They found the woman in the street, in a very distressed state with cuts and bruises.
They then went to Benwell's nearby address to arrest him. He refused to come out of the property and threatened officers but they patiently kept talking to him and after four hours he agreed to come out and was arrested without further incident.
Detective Inspector Sue Neilson of the West Sussex Safeguarding Investigations Unit said; "This victim had suffered previous assaults by Benwell but this was the first time she had fully supported police action enabling justice. This was partly because Benwell was arrested at the scene and kept in custody, allowing her time to get the support she needed to end the cycle of abuse.
"We are very grateful for the actions of members of the public who came to her aid that night having witnessed the assault. They called the police and provided witness statements. The independent evidence they provided was invaluable to our case and in the protection of the vulnerable victim.
"Domestic abuse happens every day, in every part of the UK but is not acceptable in any circumstances. If you are a victim, you are not alone – please talk to us so that we can help."
You can report domestic abuse by calling 101, online, or in person at your local police station
When you report domestic abuse police will take immediate steps to ensure the safety of the victim. This may include removing the perpetrator, arranging medical assistance and gathering evidence. If you are a victim of domestic abuse, your case will be dealt with by officers specially trained in responding to domestic abuse. A risk assessment will be completed and if you are considered of high risk your case will be passed to one of our Safeguarding Investigation Units.
For further information and more sources of counselling, advice and support see the Sussex Police website