UK

Domestic abuse victim praises ‘new girlfriend’ police order

Shira
Image caption Shira says she "went through hell physically, mentally and emotionally" during the domestic abuse

A woman whose abusive ex-partner has become subject to a landmark police order has said it will keep her family and other women safe.

Kylle Godfrey is subject to a Criminal Behaviour Order which means he must tell police of any relationship lasting more than 14 days.

Shira told the BBC she hoped it would make him "think twice before getting into a relationship".

Godfrey, 30, is currently serving a three-year prison sentence.

It is believed to be the first time in England and Wales such an order has been made.

'Through hell'

Shira - who did not want to disclose her full name - told the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire programme the abuse started shortly after they met in 2011.

"The first incident was a few months after we met and it started over the phone. I thought he was being overprotective but he was really being jealous.

"He was constantly checking on me on the phone, being paranoid and accusing me of things all the time."

Over time, she said, Godfrey became "more and more" violent.

"I went through hell with him physically, mentally and emotionally, and now I can see I risked my life with him."

On one occasion she remembers him "smashing my head on the floor four or five times".

"I thought 'I'm going to die.'

"I just had a little pray, and I realised no-one deserves to be in that position. My life is more important than this."

'Protect ourselves'

Godfrey's Criminal Behaviour Order - which lasts for seven years - also allows police to inform future partners of his previous violent behaviour to women, under the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme.

Shira said the order "makes me feel more safe, and other women will be protected".

"Instead of us women trying to prevent them [from being abusive], they have to go away from us."

Image copyright Metropolitan Police
Image caption Kylle Godfrey could be jailed if he breaches the terms of the order

"The emphasis is on the perpetrator, not the victim."

Shira said she now hopes Godfrey "will think twice before getting into a relationship".

"It's also good for me and my children, this order, as it will help us know where he is and what he's doing - to protect ourselves."

Godfrey could be jailed if he breaches the terms of the order.

'Move on'

He was jailed on 14 February after admitting to two counts of actual bodily harm, perverting the course of justice and witness intimidation.

A court heard how over several days in October last year, he attacked his ex-partner, banging her head on the floor and grabbing her around the throat.

Following his arrest, Godfrey continued to intimidate the woman and, while on bail, assaulted another woman he had started a new relationship with.

Shira said she felt "relief" at the sentencing.

"Now I can just concentrate on just moving on.

"No-one deserves to [suffer] domestic violence… especially women with children."

Detective Inspector Jane Topping, of the Met Police's Hackney Community Safety Unit, said the order "gives us a new way of protecting victims of domestic abuse and prevent other women from suffering at the hands of people like Godfrey, and help our efforts to tackle domestic violence".

"The victim in Godfrey's case was subjected to a horrendous ordeal by him following a sustained campaign of domestic violence. She has shown incredible bravery in supporting our investigation."

Watch the Victoria Derbyshire programme on weekdays between 09:00 and 11:00 on BBC Two and the BBC News channel.

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