'Sinister' Sunderland raider trashed homes of ex-partners leaving women terrified

Newcastle Crown Court
Newcastle Crown Court

A "sinister" raider trashed the homes of two ex-partners after relationship breakdowns and caused fear as well as thousands of pounds in damage.

Grant Foster smashed a patio door to get into the house of one victim, who he had previously been in a ten-year relationship with, and slashed her sofa, clothing and shoes then spray painted offensive graffiti on furniture and left a knife and hammer on her bed.

Two months later, the 36-year-old raider smashed a bay window at a second woman's home, after their five-week relationship broke down, and covered her walls and furniture in raw egg then left a knife, with the blade pointing upwards, protruding from the cushions in her sofa and covered in a quilt, which meant anyone who sat down could have been stabbed.

Foster, of Rosyth Road, Red House, Sunderland admitted two charges of burglary with intent to cause damage.

Prosecutor Emma Dowling told Newcastle Crown Court the first victim, a mum-of-two, had received a phone call from family when she was at work in June, to alert her that her home in Sunderland had been targeted.

Miss Dowling said: "She could see immediately that her home had been, in her words, trashed.

"The rear patio door that led to the garden had been smashed entirely.

"In the living room, a leather sofa and chair had been slashed and there was cream spray paint on the television monitor, a picture and the sofa.

"In the kitchen, the grill door was pulled off."

The court the grafitti said "cheater", "user" but also "sorry, I still love you".

In the victim's bedroom, her clothing and shoes had been slashed and she found a note saying "I miss you, you are my world. I love you" but which also told her "you are horrible".

The court heard there was further spray paint in the bathroom.

The victim, who took a video of some of the damage, which was played in court, said she was left "frightened".

Foster targeted his second victim's home, which was also in Sunderland, while she was on a night out, after sending her a series of abusive texts in August.

The court heard Foster had got into a relationship with the woman about five weeks earlier but she had ended it because he "wanted more" from the union than she did.

After receiving one text from Foster, which told her she "needed to call Autoglass", the woman, who is a mum of four, cut her night out short and went home.

Miss Dowling said: "When she got back to her property she could see there was damage immediately, including a bay window which was totally smashed.

"There was glass all over the living room, broken on the floor.

"There was smashed egg shells on the floor in the dining room and living room. There was raw egg dripping off the ceiling and walls."

The court heard food had been taken from the mum's cupboards and discarded, half eaten.

The contents of her bedroom drawers were on the floor.

Miss Dowling added: "A knife had been placed on the safe, hidden under a quilt, in a position between two cushions, with the blade sticking out towards the ceiling."

The victim said she was "terrified" to be in her own home after it was targeted.

Foster, who has a criminal record, appeared in court via video link to HMP Durham, where he is being held on remand.

Judge Amanda Rippon said there were "extremely sinister elements" to the case and adjourned sentence for the preparation of reports.

Foster was remanded in custody until the next hearing.