Woman Accused Of Murdering Husband Was Allegedly Abused

A UK man testified before a jury that his mother had suffered from psychological and physical abuse at the hands of his father for many years before his mother’s murder trial. In 2022, Christine Rawle was charged with stabbing her husband multiple times with a huge knife.

The trial of 70-year-old Christine Rawle, who is accused of killing her husband, Ian Rawle, is taking place at Exeter Crown Court.  She told authorities that Ian Rawle (72) had a history of being domineering and physically abusive. Ian Rawle would sometimes lock her vehicle, hide her home and car keys, or even hide her phone and credit cards.

Thomas Rawle (38) was not Ian’s son, but he referred to him as ‘Dad.’ Throughout his testimony, Thomas described Ian as an authoritarian and extremely aggressive. He said he was afraid of Ian as a child and didn’t grasp the reasons for the fights.

According to Thomas, a dispute arose over renovation plans for a bay window while he was a child. Ian grabbed his mother, hit her, and then pushed her out the window. She was bleeding and had cuts. In a separate incident, Ian used a riding crop to strike her, which slashed her face.

Thomas said that Ian once lost his temper with him because Thomas was unable to understand a math assignment.  Ian struck him on his skull with a metal ruler and then threw a hot ashtray from the mantelpiece at his leg, burning him.  Christine tried to shield him from harm when she entered the room, but Ian got in her path and hit her in the face.  Christine then stabbed her husband in the chest and arm.

The prosecutor, Sean Brunton KC, told Thomas that although his devotion to his mother was admirable, the way he was rewriting her relationship history was not.

Court witness Daniel Bowden reported that he had to deal with Ian Rawle, a council member, in 2014 and 2015 when Bowden had flooding on his land. Bowden described Rawle as aggressive, smelling of alcohol, and incoherent, making threats and insulting his wife.

Thomas acknowledged his mother’s stubbornness and bad temper but also confirmed that his mother had undoubtedly loved Ian Rawle.