A WOMAN has told how her controlling husband broke her back just weeks after their wedding – and refused to take her to hospital.
Jonathan Hall, 45, repeatedly kicked Amanda Lomax, 51, as she lay on the floor in the horror attack last year.
The pair had met five years earlier and Hall had seemed “kind” and “caring”.
But within months of knowing each other, controlling Hall became violent.
Amanda, from Warrington, Cheshire, said her family had spotted the signs and even refused to go to their wedding in September 2021, isolating Amanda from family support.
She said: “I had put up with years and years of abuse and I was completely brainwashed.
“I actually believed the attacks were my fault.
“Less than a month after we got married, he attacked me and broke my back.”
The pair married in September 2021 – a day which Amanda thought would “be a new start”.
But her family, who did not support how Hall treated Amanda, boycotted the event, and just weeks later Hall launched another vicious attack.
He kicked her to the floor and refused to stop despite her pleas.
He also wouldn’t let her go to hospital and it was only the next day, when she went to A&E in agony, that she discovered her back was broken with five fractured ribs.
The mum-of-two spent nine days in hospital on morphine and afterwards wore a back brace for months.
She still has ongoing pain and lasting damage to her back and after Hall attacked her twice more, she bravely went to the police.
He was this week jailed for 27 months.
Opening up about the abuse to help other women who may be going through the same thing, Amanda said: “When he was drunk, he’d get angry if I talked back at him.
He made me feel it was my fault every time, because he claimed I had answered him back.
“He did not like anyone arguing back, especially when he was drinking.
“He made me feel it was my fault every time, because he claimed I had answered him back.”
Alcohol can be a catalyst for abuse but it is not an excuse.
One one occasion, Hall pulled Amanda’s arm behind her back until it snapped.
She had surgery but has been left with lasting damage to her elbow.
Amanda’s family begged her to leave him but she was completely under his control and in September 2021, the couple got married.
Earlier this week, Liverpool Crown Court heard Hall, from Warrington, has 12 previous convictions for 19 offences – including for affray, assault, drink driving, drunk and disorderly behaviour and “dishonesty”.
He was also convicted of harassment against an ex in 2016, for which he received a community order.
Amanda said she had no idea.
Hall admitted inflicting grievous bodily harm without intent and two counts of assault and, appearing via video link to HMP Altcourse, was jailed for two years and three months.
He was also handed a restraining order preventing him from contacting Amanda or entering her street indefinitely and was told to pay a victim surcharge.
Sentencing, Recorder Kevin Slack said: “The victim’s mother states that she was so appalled at the prospect of you marrying her that she refused to attend the wedding.
“She was right to be concerned, because within a few weeks you gratuitously attacked Ms Lomax in the family home.
“She pleaded with you to stop, but you continued. The force was so strong that she feared she was going to die.
“The physical pain continues, but so does the psychological trauma which resulted from your attack upon her. You do at least recognise that alcohol abuse fuels the anger you seem to be unable to control in your relationships.”
He added: “I hope the sentence I am about to pass will give you time to reflect on your past behaviour and let you consider how you may change how you are going to conduct yourself in the future for the benefit of yourself and any future partner.
“This was a persistent assault which continued after Ms Lomax pleaded with you to stop.
“She was lying on the floor, making her vulnerable – you kicked her, using your foot as a weapon.”
How you can get help
Women’s Aid has this advice for victims and their families:
- Always keep your phone nearby.
- Get in touch with charities for help, including the Women’s Aid live chat helpline and services such as SupportLine.
- If you are in danger, call 999.
- Familiarise yourself with the Silent Solution, reporting abuse without speaking down the phone, instead dialing “55”.
- Always keep some money on you, including change for a pay phone or bus fare.
- If you suspect your partner is about to attack you, try to go to a lower-risk area of the house – for example, where there is a way out and access to a telephone.
- Avoid the kitchen and garage, where there are likely to be knives or other weapons. Avoid rooms where you might become trapped, such as the bathroom, or where you might be shut into a cupboard or other small space.
If you are a victim of domestic abuse, SupportLine is open Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 6pm to 8pm on 01708 765200. The charity’s email support service is open weekdays and weekends during the crisis – [email protected]
Women’s Aid provides a live chat service – available weekdays from 8am-6pm and weekends 10am-6pm.
You can also call the freephone 24-hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247.