The victim, Judge Smith said today, still wanted to believe her boyfriend was a "good man who would become a good life partner," but eventually, she ended the relationship, realising she was in danger.Gosh! Were there any clues to his character?
His serial domestic abuse followed similarly shocking behaviour towards other women, including when his ex-wife Laura had a kitchen knife repeatedly plunged into her at an Asda store in January 2002.
Regularly beating her through their four year marriage, he stabbed her three times in the back, one of the blows penetrating her heart and lungs, in a clear attempt to kill. By a "miracle", she survived the ferocious attack, but the unborn baby died, and McCarten, then 35, was jailed for 11 years.Did he serve those eleven years? Reader, he did not...
The 54-year-old's latest victim was Aintree barmaid Stephanie Johnstone, who started a relationship with him in 2017, which lasted for 15 months.Didn't she think to do some basic checks on the man she was shacking up with..!?
But his aggression began when she was hit in the face by the thug with a shoebox. He also pushed her against a wardrobe door and grabbed her throat. On another occasion, the brute assaulted her as she prepared to start an evening shift as a care worker, accusing Ms Johnstone of "speaking to someone else" and hitting her with a mobile phone so hard it left her with a head wound.
Judge Rachel Smith, who described the mum as a credible witness, not prone to any exaggeration when she gave evidence in McCarten's trial for controlling or coercive behaviour, then detailed another beating which happened as the couple returned from a "pleasant night out."McCarten, who this morning appeared via a video-link from HMP Liverpool, suddenly punched her in the face for no reason, leaving her with bruising and chipped teeth.So she immediately called police and...
Ms Johnstone, it was heard, was terrified for the safety of her child, and sent photos of her injuries to a friend in a cry for help. But more violence followed, including threats to "slit her throat" and after a meal together at a steakhouse, McCarten shoved her into the side of his van, and then drove deliberately at her.Yes. Of course you'd go for a night out with someone you were 'terrified of'...
The relationship faltered, but was rekindled in May 2018, when the yob again demonstrated he hadn't changed after she went shopping for underwear, this time promising to "kill her," pinching her nostrils together and holding her throat so she couldn't breathe./facepalm
Frightened, Ms Johnsone contacted a prison officer, and McCarten was recalled to custody, where he has been for the past two years.Why was he ever released?
He was released in 2016 after Parole Board officials deemed him no longer a threat.*sighs*
David Birrell, defending his client, claimed he "tried to turn things around," "working hard" on his business, and had tried to reconnect with his adult son. But he conceded: "There is very little personal mitigation in a case like this."When even your lawyer gives up, surely it's time for the State to decide you can never be released?
McCarten was jailed for three years.Well. Apparently not. Want to bet he won't serve them all?