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High-risk domestic abuser granted bail after allegedly fracturing woman’s cheekbone

Forensic officers refused to examine blood-soaked scene after woman declined to make statement

A serial high-risk perpetrator of domestic abuse who was previously refused bail for allegedly attacking a woman, has been released after it was confirmed she has not made a statement.

It also emerged this impacted on the role of forensic officers who refused to attend the blood-soaked scene due to the absence of a complaint.

Stanley John Hamilton (42) from Mitchellbourne Terrace, Fintona is charged with causing grievous bodily harm, false imprisonment, attempting to choke and possessing a hunting knife.

Dungannon Magistrates’ Court heard the woman reported being assaulted by Hamilton – her then partner – on August 28 after he became jealous of talking to males in a bar.

He went home and when the woman called at his house to collect her dog, she claims he locked her in and launched an attack.

She accepted hitting him in self-defence until he produced a knife, brandishing it in a threatening manner.

Officers observed blood in the living room, bathroom and hallway.

Both parties made claims against each other, with Hamilton telling police she: “Beat the face off him.”

The woman disclosed that Hamilton also allegedly attacked her on August 19, punching her face then squeezing her throat with his hands.

A search recovered a large hunting knife in his bedroom, three Samurai-type swords and a knuckleduster.

Meanwhile the woman attended hospital, later telling police she underwent surgery for a fractured cheekbone which occurred in the first incident but exacerbated by the second when Hamilton allegedly struck her in the same area.

While bail was refused at first appearance this was revisited at the most recent court sitting where a detective constable remained opposed, describing Hamilton as: “A serial high-risk perpetrator of domestic abuse. He is subject to a Violent Offences Prevention Order and managed under public protection arrangements.

“There are 40 previous convictions, including serious assaults, one involving wounding in a domestic setting. There is an established and escalating pattern of violence and aggression within a domestic context including assaults on his sister-in-law, his former wife and teenage son. Weapons used include a broken bottle, a knife and a baseball bat. An incident against a former partner involved strangulation which the most recent partner also alleged.”

District Judge Michael Ranaghan enquired if the woman: “Self-reported this injury or have police any evidential confirmation?”

The detective replied: “We have requested medical notes and she has consented.”

Judge Ranaghan remarked: “So, the height of the evidence is what she told police. Has she made a statement?”

The detective said having been interviewed for allegedly assaulting Hamilton, the woman found this: “A distressing experience. She was to make a statement but has subsequently declined.”

Asked if blood at the scene was examined, the detective stated: “Forensics were denied as there was no statement of complaint.”

A defence barrister acknowledged the charges are serious but notwithstanding the poor record: “There is the presumption of innocence. There’s no statement of complaint. I accept this is a borderline case but with stringent conditions, bail could be granted.”

Judge Ranaghan replied: “I somewhat disagree. I don’t think this is a borderline case; it’s evidentially weak. There are no forensics as it was deemed not worth doing. Bail can be managed despite the previous record.”

Hamilton was remanded on £500 bail and banned from contacting the alleged injured party or entering the area of her home.

He is also to be electronically tagged and observe a curfew from 10pm to 7am.

The case will return to court next month.

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