Pond Close in Billingshurst, near Horsham
A JEALOUS husband tried to choke his wife to death after she refused to let him look at her phone, a court heard.
Rebecca Burstow recounted being “choked till she passed out” at the trial of her husband, Mark Burstow, who stands accused of attempting to murder her.
Mrs Burstow told Lewes Crown Court how she struggled for breath as her husband of seven years “choked her” and said “I am going to kill you” as their three children slept upstairs.
The incident happened at the couple’s home around midnight in Ponds Close, Billingshurst, near Horsham, on July 14, the jury was told.
She said the couple who were in the midst of a break-up and the incident had been sparked by her refusing to unlock her mobile phone.
She said her husband, who had just come back from drinking at a social club, suspected something was going on with someone she was messaging.
She said he took hold of her finger to unlock her Iphone using her fingerprint.
But when she tried to escape the house, he blocked the front door, the jury heard.
Giving evidence from the witness box, she told the court: “I was backed away from the door up against a wall and he was in my face. I was shaking and crying. Then he smirked at me.
“I asked him to move, he said no. I was trying to get away and he was grabbing my arm and hair to stop me till I was on the floor.
“I was on my back on the floor in the hallway and he was straddling over me. A knee each side.
“He straddled over me and put his hands around my neck.
“He said he was going to kill me. I couldn’t breath. I was trying to get his hands off I couldn’t. All I could think about was the fact I could not breath. I passed out.”
Mrs Burstow said after coming back round she pushed her husband, who was still over her, and fled to her car. She was seen by neighbours who called the police.
She told the court a week prior to the incident she had told her husband she wanted to break up as she was not happy. She said he had been due to move out.
The first four years of their marriage had been good, she told the jury, before the couple struggled financially and her husband became “stuck in a rut”.Burstow had also struggled with depression and had started taking tablets before the attack, she said.
The court was also shown body camera footage from PC Helen Muncey, who was the first officer on scene, in which Burstow whilst being detained outside the house admits “I nearly f****** killed her” twice. He can also be heard to say “You need to f****** take me way”.
The jury was also shown pictures taken of Mrs Burstow’s injuries, which included swelling to her eye and the left side of her face and four finger marks on her neck.
Burstow of Pond Close, Billingshurst, has pleaded guilty to one count of occasioning actual bodily harm (ABH), but he denies one count of attempted murder.
The trial continues.
Source: The Argus