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Alexander Weston accused of attempting to murder Toni Sullivan in Meopham appears at Canterbury Crown Court

A spurned father who attacked the mother of his children with a claw hammer has denied attempted murder.

Alexander Weston, 43, described how "time stood still" as he pummelled Toni Sullivan with the weapon at her front door.

"Regrettably I was holding the hammer and I lashed out at the back of her head," he added.

The trial is taking place at Canterbury Crown Court
The trial is taking place at Canterbury Crown Court

“She turned around and I will never forget the look on her face.

"She clearly saw the hammer and her expression changed from surprised shock to a more concerned look.

“I was aiming towards her face."

Weston told Canterbury Crown Court today the first blow struck the back of his 36-year-old ex’s head.

The second landed above her right eye causing the mother of his two children to “slide down the wall,” he added.

“I zoned in on her face, as I was hitting I knew I was hitting her arms.

“She started screaming ‘he’s trying to kill me’, then it occurred to me this was not what I wanted to do.

“I let go of the hammer and ran away.”

Dressed in a dark suit, Weston told the jury his life spiralled after being forced into redundancy.

He claimed pressure mounted when Miss Sullivan ended the relationship in 2016 and began another three weeks before the attack.

Judge Simon James
Judge Simon James

Weston added he took the hammer to “scare” Miss Sullivan at her home in Croft Side, Vigo, before the early hours of September 4. He then planned to commit suicide.

When defence barrister Laurence Imrie asked Weston what effect he believed brandishing the weapon would have, he said: “I felt at least she could have a burden that a lot of the issues I had were with her.

Mr Imrie added: “Did you think it would scare her?”

Weston replied: “Yes.”

Prosecuting barrister Peter Forbes claims the attack was attempted murder – suicide.

When officers located Weston walking along the A227 at 5.40am the same morning, he said he had taken a painkiller overdose, the court heard.

Miss Sullivan, who lives in Croft Side, Vigo, directed police and paramedics to the suspect’s home in Church Fields, West Malling, fearing their children had been killed.

However police found them asleep near what Mr Forbes described as a “suicide note.”

The handwritten message read: “I’m very sorry I have had to go out and leave you. I’m a rubbish daddy, I can’t cope with you on my own, I love you both so much forever.”

Mr Forbes told the court: “This defendant attempted a murder suicide. He attempted to murder his ex-partner and take his own life.”

The trial continues.

To read more of our in depth coverage of all of the major trials coming out of crown and magistrates' courts across the county, click here.

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