Supporting a Mother against violent and abusive Father

Sandria represented the Mother in a case where the Father was seeking to enforce a CAO which gave him contact with the couple’s youngest child. The child, now a teenager, was refusing contact with the Father.

Sandria’s client, who had two other children, had fled the family home several years previously, and had subsequently been subject to a campaign of terror. After Social Services got involved, the Mother alleged historic rapes, cruel treatment, abuse and control starting before the marriage and continuing throughout. This had been reported to the Police. The Mother had also been subjected to a recent violent attack by a stranger, but a stranger whose knowledge suggested a link to the Father.

Six allegations were made for a Fact Finding, but the Father denied everything, suggesting that it was all fabricated by Sandria’s client. The allegations, however, were all found made out by Circuit Judge, including responsibility for the recent violent attack.

This case required Sandria’s ability for extremely sensitive handling of her client, including all safeguarding measures, such as screens in Court, and ensuring her safety when arriving and departing from Court. Her delicate touch in eliciting evidence in chief from her client, but contrastingly robust and detailed cross examination of the Father were noted by the Judge in the published judgement:

“Ms Murkin demonstrated very considerable skill and carried out effective cross-examination of the father who therefore faced formidable challenge to his case.”