Jailed for 10 years: thug who tried to poison pregnant girlfriend and plotted hammer attack on fitness instructor (From Bournemouth Echo)
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Jailed for 10 years: thug who tried to poison pregnant girlfriend and plotted hammer attack on fitness instructor
A MAN who plotted a hammer attack against a friend and poisoned his pregnant partner in a bid to spark a miscarriage has been jailed for 10 years.
Thug Richard Hallam, 32, was sent to prison earlier this year for masterminding a plan to assault fitness instructor Kelly Batchelor.
In the first attack on August 30 last year, Miss Batchelor, then aged 31, was struck outside Ashdown Leisure Centre in Poole.
A second, unsuccessful attempt was made on September 4, and the following day, she was attacked with a weapon in the driveway of her home Wavell Avenue.
Keith Harby, 39, of Long Eaton, Nottingham, John Doyle, 35, from Alfreton, Derbyshire, and Ian Edgeworth, 26, of Northwood Road, Nottingham, were all jailed for conspiring to cause grievous bodily harm with intent.
Police believe Hallam, of Brownsea View Avenue in Poole, may have orchestrated the attack to prove to his unnamed girlfriend that he had not been involved in a relationship with Miss Batchelor.
The victim was friends with Hallam and Harby, who even once helped her to move house.
While he was under investigation for the attack, police officers discovered Hallam had bought a drug over the internet to give his girlfriend a miscarriage.
He admitted charges of administering poison with the intent to procure a miscarriage, and procuring poison, on the day a trial against him was due to begin.
He was sentenced to a further two years in prison for the offences.
Rebecca Austin, prosecuting, said that after the victim realised she was in the early stages of pregnancy, Hallam, then also in a relationship with another woman, bought the drug Mifepristone via the internet from a person in China.
She added: “[The victim] issued a prepared statement denying either she was aware of the administration of the drugs and also that she didn’t believe Mr Hallam would have administered the drugs to her.”
The woman, who has fertility problems, only learnt that she had been given the drug when informed by police, and the horror of the case led to Judge John Harrow imposing an order to keep her anonymous.
Judge Harrow said Hallam’s guilty plea in the latest case came at the “eleventh hour”.
“The case is serious, so much so that custody is inevitable because you put the life of an unborn child at risk.
“You made great efforts to secure and obtain these drugs,” he said.
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