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Sex stabbing trial: Wife says husband was controlling and violent

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A woman who stabbed her husband with scissors during sex said he would spit on her freshly-washed hair. Photo / Getty Images

Warning: Graphic content

A woman who stabbed her husband during sex says she spent much of their married life saying, “yes sir, no sir” because he would control her, punch her and often spit in her face.

The woman, who has interim name suppression, is on trial in the Rotorua District Court. She has denied charges of wounding her husband with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and breaching a protection order.

The names of witnesses and the complainant are also suppressed, and some details of the case cannot be reported.


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It is the Crown’s case the couple often fought and the wife told a neighbour she wanted to “take him out”, referring to her husband.

Crown prosecutor Anna McConachy has said the couple were rekindling their marriage after a separation when the defendant initiated sex early one morning. Straddling her husband, when his eyes were closed, she stabbed him in the neck and abdomen, causing a life-threatening wound.

The defence case is the stabbing was in self-defence as the man was tightening a strap around her neck during sex.

Crown witnesses have included children of the couple and neighbours who often heard “fighting” and “screaming” from the home.


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The court was previously told the couple separated after their children told their dad they found messages to other men on their mother’s phone, showing she had sent nude photos and videos of herself.

The complainant got a protection order against his wife, which included a condition she not be violent towards him.

Videos of police interviews with the defendant after the stabbing were played to the jury on Friday.

In one interview, she said the couple were having sex and her husband was choking her with a bag strap, telling her she was “nasty”.

“The strap was getting tighter and tighter.”

The woman said she just wanted him to stop, she was sore from having sex but he kept going.

She said they were having sex facing each other on the bed, lying on their sides. She said her husband was pushing her upper body back while pulling on the strap.

She said in the video interview she was afraid of choking.

She leaned back and got a pair of scissors out of her bedside cabinet with her left hand, transferring them to her right hand.

“I tickled his balls to distract him so I could breathe.


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“I was able to get free and [the strap] loosened and I stabbed him.”

She said in the video interview she was “conservative” and did not like how their sex life had become. She said he was initiating sex a lot, compared with normally only having sex every four to five weeks previously.

On the morning of the stabbing, it was the third time they had sex since going to bed the night before.

She said her husband controlled a lot of things including money and she wanted to be her own person without having to “grovel” to ask for things.

She described their fighting, saying it included him kicking her and punching her through pillows in bed.

She said he would often spit in her face.


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A woman is on trial in the Rotorua District Court after stabbing her husband. Photo / Andrew Warner
A woman is on trial in the Rotorua District Court after stabbing her husband. Photo / Andrew Warner

In the second video, a police officer told the accused police had spoken to the complainant who said there was never a strap involved in their sex.

The woman responded: “Of course, he would say that,” and that he never admitted doing things wrong.

The police officer also told the woman policeresponding to her 111 call found her with a strap pulled so tightly around her neck, the officer could not get her fingers underneath it.

The officer asked why she had time to call 111 and get dressed but left the strap around her neck, which she said earlier had been loosened moments before the stabbing.

The woman said she was already dressed when they had sex, but had one leg of her tights off – contrary to the complainant’s evidence his wife was naked.

The officer asked why the blood stains were on her husband’s side of the bed – consistent with his evidence she was straddling him there when she stabbed him.


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The woman said they were not on his side of the bed, they were on their sides facing each other on their sides as he pushed her back towards her side of the bed to tighten the strap.

“Everything he was doing to me and in that moment, I wanted him to stop.”

She said she had spent their marriage “cowering” to him saying, “yes sir, no sir” and she was now standing up for herself.

“I couldn’t breathe with the strap on, he was pushing me away. It felt like he was trying to strangle me and I wanted him to stop. I was so exhausted. The fact he was doing all this to me.”

Tony Bamford is representing the accused. The trial is before a jury and Judge Tony Snell.

The Crown is expected to close its case on Monday.


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Kelly Makiha is a senior journalist who has reported for the Rotorua Daily Post for more than 25 years, covering mainly police, court, human interest and social issues.

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