At the sentencing hearing on Thursday, Asa Davison represented himself, having dismissed his defence counsel, and told the judge he was a “peaceful and kind person”
A man who attacked his girlfriend, killing her unborn baby, has been handed a life sentence.
Asa Davison was told he would serve a minimum of 12 years behind bars before being considered for parole because of his “violent” and “manipulative” personality.
A judge reasoned that these character traits meant he posed a danger to the public, particularly to future partners.
The 35-year-old from Gillingham was found guilty of child destruction, inflicting grievous bodily harm with intent (GBH), actual bodily harm (ABH) and perverting the course of justice following a trial at Bournemouth Crown Court in November last year.
At the sentencing hearing on Thursday he represented himself, having dismissed his defence counsel, and told the judge, Johannah Cutts, he was a “peaceful and kind person”.
Judge Cutts said she rejected that statement and the evidence he had given during the trial that he only sought to help and support the victim.
“You were no knight on a white charger. You are a controlling man who is quick to anger and violence, as she discovered at her cost,” Judge Cutts said.
The court heard how Davison had offered the woman a place to stay, saying he disliked the way she was being treated by her then partner. Shortly afterwards, they became a couple.
The woman then found out she was pregnant with her former partner’s child.
While Davison remained in a relationship with her, his “resentment simmered”, the judge said.
On the night of May 29 2020 Davison and the woman, who was seven months pregnant, were in Gillingham town centre when she was caught on CCTV running away from him.
Davison was then seen on his bicycle looking for her and he followed her to a block of flats in the town.
“You followed her there, not, I find, to make sure she was all right but to punish her,” Judge Cutts said.
“In all probability it was in the stairwell of those flats that you assaulted her and she was later found with swelling to her forehead, bruising to her upper arms, a fracture to her eye socket and fractures to her nasal bone.
“But it was not only her that you hurt. There was another victim of your violent and callous offending. Bruising was found to her pregnant abdomen in the shape of a fist. Her baby died as a result.”
Despite Davison being told not to contact her, the woman began once again living with him and was on one occasion found naked in a cupboard inside his home.
In September that year, he assaulted his partner again. This time she ran bloodied to a nearby community centre, where she was helped by members of the public and the police.
When he was arrested, he went on to pervert the course of justice by making recorded phone calls to her from prison encouraging her to make a false statement to the police.
The court heard how Davison had been violent to previous partners, including kicking one ex-girlfriend in the stomach while she was pregnant and threatening her with a knife. He had also broken the eye sockets of two former partners.
Judge Cutts said: “You, upon whom as her partner she was entitled to rely for love and support, caused her injury on more than one occasion, physical pain and forced her to give birth to a dead child.”
She said a pre-sentence report had described Davison’s behaviour towards the victim and other ex-partners as “violent, manipulative and grooming in nature”, adding: “I have no hesitation in finding you dangerous.”
Davison walked out of the room in which he was appearing via video link as he received a life sentence for child destruction, and concurrent sentences of six years, two years, and two years for the remaining counts.
Judge Cutts commended Sergeant George Graham, Detective Inspector Neil Third and Pc Kate Schofield of Dorset Police for their work in investigating the “extraordinarily difficult case with a victim who has not wished to cooperate with police”.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.