A MAN breached a restraining order by contacting his estranged wife early in the morning to demand she hand over £125,000.
Bob Turner was banned from contacting his ex at that time of day after he was jailed for threatening her with a gun in 2012.
Despite having broken the terms of the order twice before, the 55-year-old still went to see Liz Turner, an Arabian horse breeder, and demanded she hand over the cash. They then argued at the stud farm they own.
When the police arrived they found the couple’s son with a hammer in his hand as he pinned down his father.
Colin Meeke, prosecuting, told Swindon Crown Court: “He was before the court in January 2012 and jailed for possessing an imitation firearm with intent to cause fear of violence and two counts of battery. That was the route of the restraining order.
“He then breached that order on two more occasions in 2012 and 2013 and was imprisoned for each of those.”
He said the couple and their son all had caravans at the land they owned and on some occasions all resided there.
“The crumbling family finances meant Elizabeth Turner, on her own admission, acceded to far more contact than the restraining order permitted,” Mr Meeke said.
“That caused difficulties between them and on the day in question the defendant stayed over in a caravan on the land. He had been exasperated by the family finances, went to see his ex-wife, and demanded £125,000, his share of the property.”
Mr Meeke said the defendant was shouting and threatening his former wife to the point their son had to restrain him.
“The police arrived to find the defendant being restrained on the ground by his son,” he said.
“He was holding a hammer which he had taken up. The son believed his father had picked up a knife about the farm.”
When questioned, the defendant denied acting in a threatening manner but accepted he had contacted his wife too early and demanded the money.
Turner, formerly of Beechley Fields, Minety, but now living in Queen Elizabeth Drive, Swindon, admitted breaching the order.
Rob Ross, defending, told the court the order was “curious” in that it let him contact his ex-wife between 9am and noon or by prior arrangement.
“He contacted her at 8am, not 9am,” said Mr Ross, adding Turner had pleaded guilty on a “technical breach” of the order and hoped it could be redrafted.
Judge Philip Wassall imposed a two-year conditional discharge and issued a new restraining order. He banned him from contacting his son and only allowed contact with his wife at her instigation and if he had it in writing, including text and email.
The judge also told him he must not go to Beechley Fields in Minety or possess a firearm, including air weapons.