UK & World News
Eystna Blunnie Murder: Suspect 'Beat His Ex'
An ex-girlfriend of murder suspect Tony McLernon has told a jury how he beat her so violently she was left with a fractured jaw and black eyes.
Kimberly Mitchell was 14 when she started going out with the defendant, then aged 15, in 2004 and had a two-and-a-half year on-off relationship with him.
But after the first six months, she told Chelmsford Crown Court that he began beating her.
She said: "There were so many occasions, I cannot pinpoint them. He stamped on my head. He headbutted me. He punched me."
McLernon is charged with murdering his ex-fiancee, Eystna Blunnie, in June of last year, two days before she was due to give birth to their child.
He is also accused of causing the death of their unborn baby daughter during the brutal attack in a Harlow street.
Giving evidence, Miss Mitchell recounted the time McLernon, now 24, held a knife to her neck after she laughed because he was losing at a computer game.
She also told the jury about the most serious attack when she alleges McLernon's violence left her needing hospital treatment.
She said he punched and hit her and threatened to cut her chest open with a knife.
But despite having a hairline fracture to her jaw, swollen cheeks and black eyes, she lied to police.
"I told them I was attacked by two men in the park. I was too scared to tell the truth," she told the jury.
Miss Mitchell also alleges that she emailed his next girlfriend to warn her about the abuse but he saw the message and raced her to the police station.
There, she claims he punched her in the face as she tried to make a statement.
McLernon's defence barrister Patrick Upwood QC put it to her that the relationship was ended by him and that upset her "and the allegations you have made are simply not true".
Another ex-girlfriend Jessica Matthews, then from Clacton, told the court how McLernon had accused her of "fancying" a Tesco cashier.
Later, she claims he forced her to get on her knees and held a 12-inch knife to her stomach and throat, before starting to cut into his own arms with the blade.
McLernon denies the charges. The case continues.
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