Man jailed after attacking ex-girlfriend with a bat

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A BULLY beat his girlfriend with a bat in front of their daughter, stole her epilepsy tablets and said he hoped she had a fit.

Mark Reineck, was asked to leave by his then partner, Samantha Cleghorn, after turning up at her house, Newcastle Crown Court was told.

Miss Cleghorn told Reineck to leave and took their three-year-old daughter to the shops at 9.30am, expecting the 25-year-old, of Harcourt Road, Hill View, Sunderland, to be gone by the time she returned - but he stayed.

Prosecutor Jane Foley said: “He refused to leave and asked to stay at the property until Christmas.

“When she refused, he started calling her names and slapped her across the face.”

Reineck eventually left, but took Miss Cleghorn’s keys and her epilepsy medication and told her: “I hope you have a fit”.

Miss Foley added: “At 8.30 in the evening, the defendant turned up again and let himself in.

“He went up to the bedroom, where the victim was, and grabbed her dragging her off the bed as she cried and asked him to stop.”

Reineck then went downstairs and Miss Cleghorn followed to get him out of the house, pushing him into the kitchen and picking up a wooden bat.

In a desperate attempt to recover her keys and medication, Miss Cleghorn then hit him over the back with the bat.

Miss Foley said: “The defendant then pushed her and took the bat off her, before hitting her across the wrist.

“He then said: ‘Wait until you see what I’m going to do next’, and hit her repeatedly on the right arm and shoulder.

“The victim was left with three lumps and extensive bruising on her arm, which was swollen.”

Newcastle Crown Court heard that the couple’s three-and-a-half-year-old daughter witnessed to part of the incident, at the house in South Shields, on December 20, last year.

Reineck denied causing actual bodily harm, but pleaded guilty to the lesser offence of common assault.

The court was told that he has previous convictions for affray, including an incident in October 2000 when he threatened a 60-year-old woman with a Stanley knife.

He was also in breach of a 26-week suspended sentence, given by Sunderland magistrates, after being convicted of a previous assault on Miss Cleghorn, during which he grabbed her by the throat.

Describing Reineck, who stood with his hands shoved into his pockets throughout the hearing, Judge John Evans said: “He is plainly a bully who uses his physical advantage to beat up his child’s mother.”

The couple had previously been in a relationship for just over four years, which ended in February 2010.

Defending, Lee Fish said that Reineck now accepted that the relationship was now over.

He added: “The injuries were minimal and although I am not seeking to minimise what happened, that is a fact.”

Reineck was jailed for 10 months. His six month suspended sentence was activated for the previous offence, and he was given a further four months for the latest common assault.

He was also given an indefinite restraining order to prevent him visiting the victim’s home, but it was accepted that there should be some contact between them for the child’s sake.