Wiltshire

Elaine Pledge stabbed Stephen Watt in stomach 'over rape'

A woman stabbed a man in the stomach because he "had sex with her against her will", a court has been told.

Elaine Pledge, 55, of Pigott Close, Netheravon, Wiltshire, has denied attempted murder.

She told Winchester Crown Court that Stephen Watt, 52, had attacked her at his house in 2008 and when she saw him in a club in May, she stabbed him.

Mr Watt said they had a "now and then" sexual relationship but denied raping Mrs Pledge.

Colin Meeke, prosecuting, said the fact that the 55-year-old had stabbed Mr Watt was not in dispute, but the issue was what her intention was at the time of the attack.

'Thumped in stomach'

The court heard that Mr Watt went to the Netheravon Working Men's Club for the first time in four years on 11 May.

He said he had met up with friends and his partner, Christine Fitchett, and caught a glimpse of Mrs Pledge, who is known as Jackie, at the dartboard.

He then saw her come towards him with an angry look on her face.

"She thumped me in the stomach," Mr Watt told the court.

"I didn't know it was a knife at first until I pulled myself away and it hurt.

"I said, 'what have you done that for'?

"I grabbed my stomach and I grabbed Christine and said 'I have been stabbed, let's get out of here'."

The jury heard Mrs Pledge was restrained by her husband and others after the attack.

'Sharpest knife'

Mr Watt was later airlifted to Southampton General Hospital for treatment.

The court heard Mrs Pledge told police at the scene that she hoped Mr Watt had died.

She said to officers that she had "walked into the kitchen, opened a drawer and grabbed the sharpest knife".

Under cross examination by defence counsel Michael Butt, Mr Watt was asked if he knew why Mrs Pledge was angry with him.

"I do not know," he replied.

Mr Butt said Mrs Pledge alleged that in 2008, the pair had been drinking heavily and had gone back to Mr Watt's house in the early hours where he raped her and she was too drunk to resist.

"I suggest you had sex with her against her will," Mr Butt said.

Judge Gary Burrell QC told Mr Watt that he did not have to answer the question.

Mr Watt said he would and replied: "No sir."

"I have never done that to Jackie and I never would," he said.

The trial is expected to last four days.

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