Executive burnt wife for not ironing his shirt

First published in Crime by

A Cambridge graduate who branded his wife with an iron after she forgot to press his shirt for a party has escaped jail.

Instead Colin Read, a 25-year-old executive earning £90,000 a year, was given a £2,000 fine by a judge at Southwark Crown Court.

And Read, who also slashed his wife Elizabeth with a knife, will not have to serve a community punishment order because the judge said his job meant he would be too busy to fit it in.

His wife, who now uses her maiden name of Axe, will be filing for divorce and had to be compelled to give evidence against him during the three-day trial which resulted in Read being convicted of three counts of causing actual bodily harm.

The couple moved into a flat in Herne Hill after meeting at Cambridge University and married in June 2006.

Read, who started work for management consultancy LEK Consulting in 2005, put in 17-hour days and first attacked his wife on September 19 when he discovered the medical student had not made his sandwiches.

He slashed her foot with a knife while she slept and when she complained he beat her with his fists.

When she tried to discuss the beating with him the next day he attacked her again.

Eight days later when Read complained a shirt he intended to wear to a corporate party was not pressed he attacked her with an iron, burning her back.

Police arrested Read after a friend called officers and raised the alarm.

Initially Read told police his wife was self-harming and only later admitted he may have attacked her - but said he couldn't remember.

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