Mum ‘beaten in front of her tot’

Mum ‘beaten in front of her tot’

Mum ‘beaten in front of her tot’

First published in Local News by

A NEW mum was attacked in front of her baby by her ex-boyfriend so brutally she required emergency surgery to stop bleeding on the brain, a court has heard.

Hayley Knowles, 33, crawled from her top-floor flat before collapsing in a pool of blood outside, in Osier Drive, Noak Bridge, on August 22 last year.

She had 13 injuries to her head, face and neck after allegedly having either her head “rammed”

into the oven door, or the oven door rammed down against her head.

Her ex-boyfriend Matthew Sargent, 29, of no fixed address, denies attempted murder, but has admitted a separate charge of grievous bodily harmwith intent.

He appeared in Basildon Crown Court in front of a jury of eight women and four men on Friday.

The court heard Ms Knowles and Sargent’s seven-month-old son was in the flat at the time of the attack.

Sargent had gone to the flat to see his son one last time before handing himself in to police for another matter, it is claimed.

In a recorded police interview, played to the court, Ms Knowles said she didn’t want him in the flat as he smelt of alcohol.

She had just bathed her son and allowed Sargent to hold him while she got his bottle ready in the kitchen, the court heard.

She cannot remember anything after that, but it is alleged that is when the attack happened.

Ms Knowles said in the recorded interview: “I can see Matt sitting there on that sofa, thinking nothing of it apart from the quicker he sees him the quicker he gets out.

“I can remember handing my son over to this complete nutter and I can’t believe I left him with him.

I can’t believe I let him in.”

Photographs of the scene show blood across the kitchen appliances and lower cupboards.

After Ms Knowles crawled out of the flat, neighbours and passers-by rushed to help her.

In a statement read to the court, neighbour Hayley Lambert said: “She was covered in blood and by covered I mean drenched.

“Her face was swollen, she had skin hanging off her face, I could see she had holes in both sides of her face just behind her ears. I tried to ask her questions to keep her awake, but she wasn’t answering my questions.”

Parts of Ms Knowles’ skull broke and lodged into her brain tissue, she also had a broken jaw, cheek and nose, plus slashes to her face, side of her head and ears.

Lara Crone was the first paramedic on the scene. In a statement read to the court, she said: “In my experience I have attended numerous incidents and this incident is one of the more serious incidents and I can honestly say I was shocked by the level of injury I witnessed.”

Ms Knowles was taken to Basildon Hospital and later transferred to the Royal London Hospital for surgery to stop bleeding and bruising on her brain.

Prosecutor Jacqueline Carey said: “The Crown sees the ferocity and brutality as so much that he intended to kill her. The Crown says she was left for dead.”

After the attack, Sargent allegedly left his son in an alleyway while he went to a nearby Costcutter to buy four cans of beer.

The trial continues.

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