Beds, Herts & Bucks

Natalie Cassidy fiance Adam Cottrell sentenced for assault

Adam Cottrell
Image caption Adam Cottrell arrives at court for sentencing for attacking actress Natalie Cassidy

The fiance of former EastEnders actress Natalie Cassidy has been sentenced to 120 hours of unpaid work for attacking her at their home in Hertfordshire.

Adam Cottrell, 31, had earlier pleaded guilty to assault and criminal damage when he appeared at East Hertfordshire Magistrates' Court.

The court heard Cottrell twice attacked Cassidy at their flat in Broxbourne.

Elaine McMillan, prosecuting, told the court Cottrell attacked 28-year-old Cassidy on 13 April with a slipper.

Cottrell was also made subject to a restraining order banning him from contacting the actress.

Deputy District Judge Anita Borwick placed Cottrell on a 12-month community order, with 12 months supervision.

'Humiliating and disturbing'

She said the restraining order was both "proportionate and necessary" given the three instances were within weeks of each other.

Image caption Natalie Cassidy played Sonia Jackson in EastEnders

She told him to pay compensation for damage he had caused to the tune of £350, and also £100 compensation to Miss Cassidy, as well as costs of £85.

"Your behaviour towards Miss Cassidy was both humiliating and disturbing, and these incidents were fuelled by alcohol.

"You showed remorse and accepted responsibility.

"My concern is that there may be a pattern of behaviour emerging. I feel you would benefit by the intervention of the probation service."

'Fully remorseful'

Mrs McMillan said: "The defendant lost his temper and he assaulted her by smearing her with mascara and striking her with a slipper on the upper leg."

In a second attack on 20 May he grabbed her by the arms and ripped her top, she said.

Cottrell went on to damage their home after Miss Cassidy left to stay with her family, smashing a £200 microwave, wine glasses worth £100 and a £50 candelabra, the court heard.

Miss Cassidy, who was due to marry Cottrell later this year, played Sonia Jackson in the BBC1 soap EastEnders.

She quit the series in 2007 but briefly rejoined in February 2010 and also made one appearance earlier this year.

Cottrell, who told the court he had no permanent address, left the court building without commenting to waiting reporters.

Vincent Mitchell, defending, said Cottrell was fully remorseful and accepted he had done wrong.

Cottrell felt the incidents came from the use of alcohol but did not feel he had a problem with it, he said.

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