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Love triangle ended in assault

By Spalding Reporter

A love triangle involving a man and two women came to a head when one of the women assaulted both the man and the other woman, who was nursing a baby at the time of the attack, in something like a 'soap opera script' a court has heard.

Boston Magistrates heard that Katie Croker (43), of Ash Court, Donington, who admitted the offences, went to Nicola Bristow's house in Siltside, Gosberton, where Lee Andrew was pressure washing a gazebo for a christening the next day, shouting at him: “You're a liar. You're a liar,” before assaulting both of them.

Paul Wood, prosecuting, said Croker and Lee Andrew had been a couple until just two days before the assaults took place and he had moved in with Miss Bristow.

He said that at 6pm on May 6, Mr Andrew had been pressure washing the gazebo while Miss Bristow was nursing her three month old baby in her arms, when Croker arrived.

He said Croker picked up the washer and threw it at Mr Andrew, missing him, then punched Miss Bristow several times and pulled some of her hair out, leaving her with a small cut, bruises and scratches.

Mr Wood said Mr Andrew tried to pull Croker off her and she bit him, drawing blood, but he was able to hold her until police arrived some 10 minutes later.

Mr Wood said Croker was already subject to a community order for damaging Miss Bristow's car last year and causing £1,500 damage.

In mitigation, Roger Lowther said Croker was 'ashamed of herself' and 'appalled at her actions on that day', which he said were like 'something out of a soap opera script'.

He said Mr Andrew and Croker had been in a two year relationship but during this time, Miss Bristow had given birth to Mr Andrew's child.

He said it had been a 'complicated and unhealthy relationship' and that sometimes Mr Andrew had lived with Croker whilst having an affair with Miss Bristow but, at other times he had lived with Miss Bristow and had an affair with Croker.

He said that Mr Andrew had left Croker on May 4, telling her he was going to live at his mother's but later she had seen his car outside Miss Bristow's.

Mr Lowther said she was still upset on May 6 and she determined to go to Miss Bristow and tell her what he was like and then 'saw red'.

“She was a woman very much scorned,” said Mr Lowther.

The magistrates heard that Croker, a full time support worker who also helped her mother with her care, had alcohol issues.

They told her that the aggravating features of the assaults were 'quite shocking' and that they were 'very concerned about the whole situation'.

They revoked a previous unpaid work requirement as unworkable, imposed a new 12 month community order and ordered her to participate in 20 days of rehabilitation and a six month alcohol treatment order.

She was also ordered to pay £250 compensation to Miss Bristow and £200 to Mr Andrew, as well as £170 in court costs and charges.

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