Tyne & Wear

Alice Ruggles death: Complaints about accused 'palmed off'

Alice Ruggles Image copyright Northumbria Police
Image caption Alice Ruggles was found dead at her flat in October last year

A woman who complained about her ex-boyfriend harassing her five days before he allegedly killed her felt her call was "palmed off" by police, a court has heard.

Alice Ruggles, 24, was found in her Gateshead home with her throat cut in October last year.

Trimaan "Harry" Dillon denies murder.

Newcastle Crown Court heard Mr Dillon, a soldier, received an official warning from the army for continuing to contact Ms Ruggles after the pair broke up.

Five days before her death he sent her a parcel containing a letter, photos and a notebook prompting Ms Ruggles to contact police.

Ms Ruggles' flatmate Maxine McGill said she was unable to speak to an officer who had dealt with her before so discussed it with an operator instead.

Image copyright Google
Image caption Alice Ruggles was found dead at her home in Rawling Road by her flatmate

Ms McGill, who was a colleague of Ms Ruggles at Sky in Newcastle, told the court: "She says she felt as if it was palmed off.

"She was asked the question 'what do you want us to do about it?'

"She said 'I don't know, that's why I am phoning you. I was asked to get back in touch if I had any further contact'.

"She basically says it was just a waste of time."

'Manipulative and possessive'

The court heard Ms Ruggles was asked if she wanted Mr Dhillon arrested but she decided not to take that step.

Ms McGill said Mr Dhillon "almost creeped me out" when she first met him because he was "overly nice".

She said she came to find him controlling, manipulative and possessive around Ms Ruggles who "became an introvert", developed "anxiety" and "lost so much weight".

The relationship declined after Ms Ruggles, who was from Leicestershire but stayed in the North East after going to university in Newcastle, found Mr Dhillon had been messaging other women on dating sites, Ms McGill said.

He used emotional blackmail to try to get her back, then threatened to release sexual photos of her, Ms McGill said.

The trial continues.

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