A MAN who tried to kill his partner of 30 years by smashing her over the head with a hammer was jailed for six years on Wednesday.
Charles Strachan, 62, then set fire to bedding in their West Lothian caravan forcing Yvonne Edwards, who suffered a fractured skull in the brutal attack, to escape out of a window.
The High Court in Glasgow heard that Strachan assaulted a passer-by and a police officer who came to help.
The court heard that Strachan attempted to murder his partner because he blamed her for their failing relationship.
Jailing Strachan judge Lord Boyd told him that but for his early plea of guilty, he would have jailed him for nine years.
Lord Boyd described the attack on Ms Edwards as ‘terrible” and added: “She now suffers from headaches and tiredness and is anxious, fearful and depressed.”
He told Strachan: “Your background report makes depressing reading. You appear to blame your partner for problems in your relationship.”
The unprovoked attack happened at Mosshall caravan park in Blackburn on October 29 last year, as Ms Edwards lay in bed.
Strachan repeatedly hit Ms Edwards on the head with a hammer. Afterwards he told police that he “presumed she was dead” and added: “I realised what I’d done. I was going to burn me and the caravan down.”
Prosecutor Alex Prentice said: “He struck her repeatedly on the head with a hammer forcing her to escape from the caravan by falling out of a window as he set a fire inside.”
Part of the incident was captured on CCTV.
Ms Edwards tried to open a window to get away from the attacker but continued to be struck as she made her escape.
She crawled away from it on her hands and knees and neighbours who heard screaming went to her aid.
Mr Prentice said: “The accused then poured accelerant on a mattress and set fire to the mattress and bedding.”
Strachan told police: “I can barely remember. I don’t know what started it. I do remember hitting her more than once I’m afraid.”
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