A man accused of trying to kill his partner in her sleep has a very strange excuse. 31-year-old Bradley Souto claims that he was dreaming about cage fighting when he choked his partner in her sleep. He said that while he was sleeping, he was acting out a vision where he was involved in a televised cage match.
Jurors at Derby Crown Court were told that he put his opponent into a chokehold in his dream. The incident took place on November 13, 2019, but he claims that he did not intend to hurt anyone and had no clue what he was doing at the time.
According to Metro, Prosecutor Jonathan Straw said explained that ‘This defendant, Bradley Souto, tried to kill his partner Rebecca Jackson and very nearly succeeded. She had gone to sleep and the next thing she recalls is regaining some sort of consciousness with him strangling her from behind in a choke hold.”
Straw said that Jackson could not breathe and she very quickly lost consciousness, but before she lost consciousness she heard him say “don’t worry, this won’t take much longer”.
A 999 call was heard in court, in which he told the operator, “I ran a rampage, I choked my girlfriend out, she’s very purple in the face.”
He admitted in his defence statement that he had choked her and this incident did happen, but he claims that he was not aware of it because he was asleep.
He says that while he was strangling her he became aware that he was not in a dream. However, the court heard that the couple’s relationship was on the rocks because Souto was drinking excessively.
The day before the attack, Ms Jackson sent a message to Souto saying that he would have to leave their home if he continued drinking. On the night of the attack, Souto was drinking heavily before going to bed unusually early, at around 9:30 pm.
Jackson ‘went upstairs and challenged him about this but he was non-responsive’ according to prosecutors.
“She next remembers getting into bed and her phone vibrating on the bedside table, which was a message from a friend and neighbour. The next thing she remembers is regaining some sort of consciousness having him strangling her from behind in a choke hold,” prosecutors said.
The Crime Survey for England and Wales showed that an estimated 2.3 million adults aged 16 to 74 experienced domestic abuse in the last year. The police recorded 758,941 domestic abuse-related crimes in England and Wales, which is an increase of 9% from the previous year.