Man smashed his way into house of estranged wife

PUBLISHED: 11:44 06 July 2006 | UPDATED: 10:23 06 May 2010

A HUSBAND separated from his wife who became fixated that she may have left him for another woman used a crowbar to smash his way into the house where she was living. Mark Edlin then forced his way into a bedroom where his wife and her friend had tried to

A HUSBAND separated from his wife who became fixated that she may have left him for another woman used a crowbar to smash his way into the house where she was living.

Mark Edlin then forced his way into a bedroom where his wife and her friend had tried to barricade themselves in and confronted her. She denied the allegation.

His actions led to him being jailed for 15 months at Luton Crown Court.

Edlin, 44, of Bronte Paths, Stevenage, pleaded guilty last week to burglary with intent to cause damage, and affray.

Prosecutor Catherine Purnell said Edlin, a carpenter, and his wife, Elizabeth, had been married for 17 years but she left him in November last year, saying she could not tolerate his controlling behaviour.

A friend in Astral Close, Lower Stondon, took her in and on January 6 he was seen watching the house. But in the early hours of the following day Mrs Edlin received a call from her daughter alerting her that he was on his way to the house.

The two women dialled 999 and tried to barricade themselves in the bedroom.

"They heard the living room window being smashed and footsteps coming upstairs. They saw a crowbar coming through the bedroom door and were terrified. He managed to push the door open and calmly and methodically headed straight for her," said Miss Purnell.

"Mrs Edlin was hysterical and fell over, but she managed to extract the crowbar from him."

The prosecutor said he left the scene and was arrested later.

Robert English, defending, said: "After she left him he became fixated that perhaps she was having an affair with the friend she was living with.

"His mental anguish got worse with alcohol and he ruminated on very negative thoughts. He was clinically depressed and sought medical help."

He said that Edlin now realised it was wrong to go and confront her and that the incident would have been frightening. A divorce was going through and he was estranged from his daughters. Mr English urged the court to pass a community penalty with assistance for him to address his problems.

But Judge Barbara Mensah said: "This is too serious for a sentence other than custody. It was a nasty vicious attack on your former wife who had plucked up the courage to leave you.

"You went armed with a weapon and acted in a violent and bullying manner.


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