Husband jailed for nine years for horror axe and boiling water attack on wife
1:29pm Thursday 29th May 2014 in County News
A former Haverfordwest woman has spoken of a horrific domestic attack that left her badly burned and with serious injuries to her hands.
Julie Manwaring, 36, was attacked by her husband, on February 11 at their home in Bell Chase, Yeovil, Somerset. The couple had moved from Haverfordwest in April 2012.
Paul Manwaring, 51, pleaded guilty to grievous bodily harm and criminal damage at Taunton Crown Court on Friday. He was sentenced to nine years in prison and was made subject to a restraining order.
Mrs Manwaring said that, following a discussion on the night of Sunday February 9th, her husband said he was moving out and returned home to Wales.
The following Tuesday she returned home late from work to find Manwaring standing in the kitchen of their home next to the kettle.
He asked if she was always going to be late home from work and then began to attack her.
"He punched me in the face. He kept punching and punching me," she said. "I was pleading with him. I ended up on the floor on a ball."
Manwaring then walked into the hallway and picked up a small axe hidden under his coat.
"At this point I thought 'I'm going to die'. He opened out my hand and I thought he was going to chop my hand off. He said he was going to ruin my career. With the back of the axe head he repeatedly smashed both my hands."
Half way through the attack Manwaring rang an ambulance, he then came back into the room and continued to attack his wife, hitting her and twice pouring a kettle of boiling water over her head.
"He went into the lounge and started smashing up the room. I thought 'I've got to get out of here'," said Julie.
"I managed to get a spare key out of kitchen drawer and unlocked the back door even though my hands were completely trashed.
"I ran out of back garden, into the house of a complete stranger and asked them to call the police. When they came Paul gave himself up immediately."
Mrs Manwaring sustained burns to the back of her scalp, the side of her face and her ear. Three fingers and the back of her hand were broken. Although the burns have healed up well she has metal plates in her finger and still has problems with her right index finger.
Her house was also inhabitable due to the damage Manwaring had caused.
"It had never ever happened before. It was completely out of the blue," she said. "I never expected violence.
"I don't know what to feel. I feel very sad in a way. The sentence doesn't feel like enough. It will really only be four and a half years. For me my safety is paramount. I need to know I'm going to be safe. I need to know he's going to leave me in peace.
"I can't get my head around it. I don't know how someone could dream up what he did.
"I've had a lot of support from family and friends at home in Pembrokeshire. Even from friends of Paul's who can't believe what he's done.
"When he comes out of prison life will be different for him. He's wrecked his life. I'll be fine. I'll move on. I know I will."