A DOMESTIC violence victim has spoken out after her former boyfriend was handed a prison sentence for beating her.
Cumbrian Joy Sayers, 38, is encouraging other victims to come forward to report abuse, following the conclusion of a court case in which her former partner, Michael Jacques, 50, pleaded guilty to assault by beating.
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“I would like to take this opportunity to encourage anyone who has experienced domestic abuse to come forward so that they can seek justice, and hopefully reduce the risk of it happening to another woman," said Ms Sayers.
"I was determined to see him prosecuted as what he did to me was completely wrong, particularly as our young sons were in the house at the time.
"Although I would never say anything negative to them about their father, it is important to me that they do not grow up believing that violence is acceptable."
Jacques, of Sandgate, Penrith, has been sentenced to 140 days in prison, suspended for 12 months, and ordered to pay £150 compensation and £190 costs and complete 60 hours of unpaid work.
It follows an incident on March 7, this year, when police received a call from a member of the public to a report of an ongoing domestic assault.
Ms Sayers suffered facial bruising, loss of hair, scratches and grazes to her arms, legs, and forehead.
“This is the first time I have ever experienced anything like this – the physical violence was completely out of the blue," she added.
"It was such a shock and I was really scared to talk to the police about it.
"However I would like to urge women in a similar position to report violence in the home as no one should have to accept it as part of their life.”
Cumbria Constabulary's DC Cath McFadden, who lead the case, said: “I am pleased that Jacques has been punished for his actions.
"Domestic violence will not be tolerated in Cumbria – no one should have to live in fear in their own homes.
"I would encourage anyone who has any concerns to get in touch; all reports will be dealt with sensitively and professionally.”
Anyone who would like to report domestic violence should call Cumbria Police on 101, or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.