Ipswich: Builder broke into extranged wife’s flat to find out if she was in a relationship with someone new

Builder broke into estranged wife's flat while she was in the bath

Builder broke into estranged wife's flat while she was in the bath - Credit: Archant

An Ipswich builder who was “obsessed” with finding out if his estranged wife was in a new relationship broke into her flat while she was in the bath and chased after her holding a hammer, a court has heard.

Julian Jacobs climbed through a window into his wife Mandy Jacob’s flat in Churchman House in Portman Road after telling her that if she didn’t open the door he would smash his way in, Ipswich Crown Court was told.

Shortly afterwards Jacobs walked in while she was in the bath and when she asked him what he was doing he told her: “I want to know what’s going on.”said Robert Sadd, prosecuting.

Mrs Jacobs covered herself with a towel and when she tried to get past him Jacobs reached in his pocket and produced a lump hammer and brought it up to his shoulder.

Mrs Jacobs ran to the front door pursued by her former husband who was holding the hammer but couldn’t get out because he had locked it, said Mr Sadd.

During the incident Jacobs seized her wrist but she had broken free and ran to the bathroom where she sat on the floor with her back against the door to stop him coming on.

Jacobs had rammed the door with his body and managed to force it open and when she tried to call her new partner and the police on her mobile phone he had taken it off her, said Mr Sadd.

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Mrs Jacobs then heard her other phone ringing in her handbag and there was a struggle as she tried to keep hold of her phone.

Jacobs had then pulled clothes out of her wardrobe and broke a rail and there was a further struggle as Mrs Jacobs tried to take the hammer off him.

Jacobs had then left the flat with his wife’s two phones through the same window he had used to enter the premises, said Mr Sadd.

the phones were later returned to Mrs Jacobs, who had a sore wrist and a bruise on her knee as a result of the incident.

Jacobs, 42, of Henley Road, Ipswich admitted burglary and common assault on August 24 and was given a 14 month prison sentence suspended for two years and ordered to do 180 hours unpaid work in the community, He was also ordered to pay Mrs Jacobs £500 compensation and to attend a Better Relationships programme.

Sentencing him Judge Rupert Overbury said Jacobs had become obssessed with knowing whether or nor his estranged wife was in a new relationship.

“You had a lump hammer and produced it not to use it on her but to enforce your desire to get answers from her,” said the judge.

Judge Overbury said he had read a number of references from people who spoke highly of Jacobs.

Michae Warren for Jacobs described his client’s behaviour as “loutish” and said Jacobs realised the incident must have been extremely frightening for his estranged wife.

He said the couple had been married for 23 years and had three sons aged between 14 and 21 and he had gone to her flat after hearing rumours that she was in a new relationship. “He felt he needed to know what was going on,” said Mr Warren.