Estate agent living with ex in lockdown cleared of attacking him with scissors due to
An estate agent was arrested after she was accused of pulling a pair of scissors on her university academic ex-boyfriend and spitting at him during a Cava-fuelled fight over Covid-19 lockdown rules.
Former preparatory school teacher Helen Ollerton, 54, was cleared of assault by beating at Tameside Magistrates’ Court after Wyn Rhys, 54, accused her of punching and attacking him with scissors at his Altrincham flat on November 14 last year.
Miss Ollerton allegedly flew into a rage after Mr Rhys said he was going to his North European beer bar which had been ordered to shut due to the pandemic.
Mr Rhys, 54, an ex-psychology lecturer at Coventry University who owns the bar, insisted he was going to do some paperwork.
Tameside Magistrates’ Court cleared Miss Ollerton (left) of assault by beating because of inconsistencies in the evidence given by Mr Rhys (right)
Mr Rhys said that Miss Ollerton ‘is essentially a charming, good professional person’ during the trial at Tameside Magistrates’ Court where he accused her of assault
But Miss Ollerton became angry in the mistaken belief he was going to illegally open up his subterranean premises to customers.
During the ensuing scuffle at Mr Rhys’ rented basement apartment near Altrincham, Greater Manchester, Miss Ollerton was accused of threatening him with the scissors.
Miss Ollerton also stood accused of spitting at her ex-partner while he was said to have kicked at her causing bruising to her wrist.
Mr Rhys is a former psychology lecturer at Coventry University and runs the Mort Subite bar in a former mortuary near the former Altrincham Hospital
Miss Ollerton, from Timperley, was cleared after magistrates said while an argument had taken place, parts of the case against her had been ’embellished’ by Mr Rhys.
The incident occurred during the Government’s ‘firebreak’ lockdown in November – five weeks after the couple had broken up.
Despite the split, the pair were in the same Covid bubble and Miss Ollerton asked if she could use his shower, due to her own bathroom undergoing renovation work.
Miss Ollerton told the hearing: ‘My parents were self-isolating and they’re in their late 80s, and my friend suffers from cancer and I needed to shower and clean myself and Wynn was my only option.
Mr Rhys’ landlady Joanne Cushing said that Miss Ollerton (pictured) was ‘quite inebriated’ on the night of the alleged assault
‘I was in the bathroom for about thirty minutes and afterwards Wyn invited me to sit on the sofa and asked if I would like a glass of cava. I said ‘yes’ and while chatting to him, I said, ‘What are you doing this afternoon?’
‘He said: ‘Well, I’m going out. I have got things to do.
‘He then said, ‘It’s got nothing to do with you’ and he told me: ‘ F**k off. I have got an appointment. I have got to be out of here.’
‘There was a card that I had given him, which said: ‘Good People Deserve Good Things’ but he was being quite mean. So I went to the kitchen, collected the scissors and cut the card up.
Mr Rhys’ evidence was dismissed by magistrates as not credible due to ‘inconsistency; in his testimony
‘He then grabbed the scissors off me, grabbed my hand and said that I really needed to go now.
‘I said ‘I will go in a minute. I just need to dry my hair’ but he said ‘no’, grabbed my bags and put them outside the apartment, and it started to rain.
I went to grab the bag but he kicked and hit my hand and wrist several times. I never went into the bedroom.
Mr Rhys, who runs Mort Subite bar in a former mortuary opposite the former Altrincham Hospital, told the hearing: ‘She is essentially a charming, good professional person and there was no reason why I would not let her round.
‘There was lots of shouting and there were serval punches to my chest, spitting, that sort of behaviour. Because of her behaviour, I stood up. I tried to avert any confrontation but the behaviour escalated from there.
Mr Rhys told the court that he had called 999 when he believed that he could not avoid altercation with Miss Ollerton
‘There were clearly physical and verbal interactions. There was punching and then, unfortunately, I had to call 999.
‘There was punching to my chest. As I was saying to Helen to leave, there was some spitting.
‘Particularly at the time of lockdown, it was a bit disturbing. It was in my face and I felt in danger.
‘She was verbally and physically aggressive. I encouraged her to leave, which she did not.
‘Sadly, what occurred that afternoon just got worse and she picked up some scissors and thrust them at me.
Magistrates said Miss Ollerton’s evidence was ‘credible and concise’ when clearing her of the charge
‘At that point, Helen went into my bedroom and started to cut up my bedding and my quilt. Going through lockdown, perhaps her mental state wasn’t great.
Mr Rhys’ landlady Joanne Cushing said: ‘There was a lot of shouting coming from downstairs.
‘We were thinking there might be something dreadful going on. We came to the back door. Wyn was out of the property.
‘He was apologising for few minutes but there were noises from downstairs and I could see Helen was coming up from downstairs.
‘She was struggling to get up each step and she was quite inebriated. It was quite a surprise to how drunk she was at that time.
Clearing Miss Ollerton, magistrates told her that they found her evidence to be credible and concise while Mr Rhys’ testimony was said to be inconsistent and that there was ’embellishment as the case progressed’.