DOMESTIC ABUSE SPECIAL REPORT: ‘I woke up looking like elephant man’ – victim

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“He came in screaming ‘where did you go‘ and pulled my head back. That’s all I remember. Then I woke up looking like the elephant man.”

Georgia Peacock was unconscious for much of the attack by her boyfriend that left her with horrific injuries.

Georgia Peacock was attacked by boyfriend Billy Ashcroft.

Georgia Peacock was attacked by boyfriend Billy Ashcroft.

She recalls being dragged backwards off a sofa in her Halifax home and waking up with a fractured eye socket following the beating.

Her former boyfriend Billy Ashcroft (inset) was jailed last month for three and a half years for the attack.

Miss Peacock said there was nothing anyone could say to encourage someone to leave an abusive partner if they were determined to stay but she hoped that revealing her ordeal it might show someone in a similar position how serious it can end up.

In February, Miss Peacock left the pub where she had been drinking with Ashcroft following a disagreement. He returned home, furious, and set upon her.

When she awoke she could not walk or see. She said it was not the first time that Ashcroft had been violent but it was the most severe.

“I went to the top and the stairs and I shouted ‘Billy, Billy, what the have you done?”

She does not remember much of the attack but has been told it could have gone on for 15 or 20 minutes.

The fireplace was had been broken with her face and there was blood on the carpet where she was “laid out for a while”.

She had no defence wounds, which she was told suggested she was knocked out early in the assault.

“The domestic nurse said, ‘Georgia, I’ve been doing this for 11 years now and there have been five cases similar to yours. Three of them died, one survived an extra two months and you’re the fifth. I’ve never seen someone with injuries that bad who survived.”

She was locked in the house alone for several hours the next morning while Ashcroft went to work. When her mother came round she lied at first, telling her that she was attacked by a stranger in Halifax town centre.

Eventually she came clean and her mother contacted the police.

Miss Peacock said: “I would never have called the police myself. I would have protected him. I would never have gone to hospital, even with the injuries I had.

“For some bizarre reason I just absolutely adored him. I loved him, I loved him a lot. I wanted to protect him, I didn’t want his family to know what he’d done.

“We were really funny together at first. We got together because he turned up to every shift where I worked in Sowerby Bridge. He ended up wherever I went after work and talk to me all night. I just kind of fell for him.”

She always hoped that the situation would improve by itself and her boyfriend would change. She said: “If it goes on and you let someone get away with it then it just gets progressively worse.

“I feel like he’s a nice person deep down but I can never forgive him for what he’s done. It’s imprinted in my brain now. When I go to sleep I’m tired because every other night I’ll have a nightmare about it. So I don’t get much sleep.”

Ashcroft, formerly of Elland, pleaded guilty to a charge of inflicting grievous bodily harm with intent and was jailed for 40 months.

At Bradford Crown Court his barrister, Jayne Beckett, said he was devastated and ashamed about what he had done. She said her client, who then lived at Woodlands Mount, Boothtown, Halifax, had suffered some mental health problems and the offence was a tragedy for everyone.

Miss Peacock said: “I hope if people see the pictures it will help somebody, because it did start off nice but it progressively got worse like it always will.

“It’s never going to be ‘alright, he’s done it once, he’s sorry’, they always do it again. So if people say this and they know there is never a good outcome I’d be more than happy. Just so they know to get out while they can because it could have gone vastly different for me and it could go vastly different for them.”

The National Domestic Violence Hotline can be contacted on 0808 2000 247.