Attack accused told jury he was ‘attacked many times’ by alleged victim

Teesside Crown Court

Teesside Crown Court

A taxi driver accused of assaulting his partner told a jury all the problems between them were her fault.

Paul Amerigo said the woman was a violent alcoholic who had abused him many times during their two-year relationship.

Teesside Crown Court heard Amerigo is alleged to have punched the woman and kicked her while she was on the kitchen floor of their house in Hartlepool.

The alleged attack caused the woman to ‘lose control of her bowels’, said prosecutor Nigel Soppitt.

“She did that on purpose,” said Amerigo. “She came at me, so I took hold of her arms to restrain her.

“If I’m supposed to have stamped on her stomach so hard that she pooed herself, why are there no photographs of bruising?

“It is preposterous, she is a liar and an alcoholic, she attacked me many times during our relationship, but I am a passive guy so I just grinned and beared it.”

Mr Soppitt asked Amerigo to explain how his partner came by a bloody nose on the night of the alleged assault.

“She was drunk and fell over three times that evening,” said Amerigo. “She and her mother made the injury look worse by putting lots of strips on it.

“At no time did I punch or kick her.”

The court heard that before the alleged assault, Amerigo did a moonie - exposed his buttocks - to two young women who were babysitting for the couple.

“We were having a good laugh,” he said. “Yes, I pulled a moonie, it was a silly thing to do, drunken shenanigans.

“But it’s not as if I showed them my front, it was only a pair of buttocks.”

Amerigo was asked why when interviewed by the police he refused to answer many of the questions put to him.

“I was confused,” he said. “I’d been in a cell for hours and was desperate for a cigarette.

“The police were being manipulative, exaggerating my words.

“That’s why I started to go no comment.”

Amerigo, 39, of York Road, Hartlepool, denies assault occasioning actual bodily harm on January 31.

He denies common assault on March 7 when he is alleged to have pushed his partner during an argument over who should have the television following the break-up of their relationship.

The jury is expected to retire to consider its verdicts on Wednesday.