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Violent and controlling husband threatened to hire hitman on long-suffering wife

Thames Water employee Richard Alec Wilcox threw partner across a room

William Walker

John Garvey


01635 886641

A VIOLENT and controlling husband threatened his long-suffering wife with hiring a hitman, Newbury magistrates heard.

Thames Water employee Richard Alec Wilcox threw Fiona Wilcox across a room into a wall after accusing her of seeing other men, while their terrified children looked on, the court was told.

But when his wife finally snapped and telephoned police, Mr Wilcox pleaded: “Don’t do this, you’ll ruin everything.”

On Thursday, April 14, the 30-year-old was made subject to a restraining order after his wife told officers: “I’ve had enough.”

Helen Waite, prosecuting, said the 14-year relationship foundered due to Mr Wilcox’s controlling behaviour, punctuated by instances of violence.

On the day in question, she said, Mr Wilcox was due to collect the children, but he suddenly became aggressive, accusing his wife of sleeping with other men.

Ms Waite added: “He grabbed her by the left arm, which hurt, and threw her across the room into the kitchen wall.

“He pressed his face against hers to intimidate her and then threatened to get a hit man to ‘sort her out’.”

But Mrs Wilcox had finally had enough, the court heard; she phoned the police despite her husband’s desperate pleas, and he left the home in Ashampstead before officers arrived to arrest him.

Mrs Wilcox told police: “I’ve had enough of being treated like this; my children shouldn’t have to see it.

“He’s emotionally battered me, saying that no one will want me and that I’m a psycho.”

When Mr Wilcox was eventually arrested, said Ms Waite, “he accepted the behaviour I have outlined”.

Mr Wilcox admitted assaulting Fiona Wilcox by beating her on March 27.

Phil Kouvaritakis, defending, said his client would oppose any application for a restraining order.

He added: “He is of previous good character and has been working for Thames Water for the past five years.

“Physically, he only accepts grabbing her and giving her a shove. He was being shouted at and it was a spur of the moment reaction.

“He should have been more aware of where the children were and he accepts that.

“But a grab on the arm doesn’t meet the criteria required for a restraining order – the order must be proportionate and necessary and he does not accept the previous accusations of violence, apart from an accident involving crockery.”

Nevertheless, magistrates made Mr Wilcox subject to a two-year restraining order, preventing him from having any contact, whether direct or indirect, with his estranged wife.

In addition he was fined £300 and ordered to pay £85 costs plus a £30 surcharge.

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