‘I don’t like being in public in case he shows up’
A GOLD Coast woman's voice shook as she told the court how she spent months frightened and in hiding after her former partner threatened to "cave her head in".
The threat was a part of ongoing abuse which included threatening to "cave her head in", stomping on her calf, grabbing her by the throat, pulling her hair, kicking her in the ribs and calling her names such as "fat", "ugly" and a "slut".
Bradley John Shepherd did not look at the woman as she spoke in the Southport District Court on Thursday after Shepherd pleaded guilty to assault occasioning bodily harm and four counts of common assault.
During the sentencing the woman gave a moving statement about how her life had changed.
She said she had to "literally hide" from Shepherd after they broke up.
"I used to be a social person, regularly meeting up with family and friends and socialising," she said.
"I am now very suspicious of people.
"I don't like being out in public just in case he shows up.
"I don't trust people around me because I don't know their motives and I don't trust their motives."
The woman said she didn't like leaving her house because it made her feel scared, vulnerable and isolated.
"I never used to be like this before this happened and I constantly fear for my life."
The woman said she was also unable to wear heels or stand for long period of times due to the injury Shepherd inflicted on her left.
Judge Katherine McGinness told the woman she was "very brave" and thanked her for providing the statement.
She sentenced Shepherd to 18 months with immediate parole. He has already spent six months in prison.
"Sadly these types of offences are prevalent in our community," she said.
Judge McGinness said it was not a one-off.
"You're actions were cowardly, physically violent, threatening and also name calling which would have been humiliating and degrading," she said.
Defence barrister Nick McGhee, instructed by Allen & Searing Criminal Lawyers, said Shepherd was undergoing a 27-week domestic violence prevention court.
He said Shepherd suffered post-traumatic stress disorder.
*For 24-hour domestic violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.
Originally published as 'I don't like being in public in case he shows up'