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Suspended sentenced for bully husband who made death threat on note

By John Scott | South Staffordshire | Crime | Published:

A "vindictive bully" warned he was going to kill his wife in a note left at the home of his brother whose car he took without permission, a judge heard.

Wolverhampton Crown Court, where Steven Bills was sentenced

Steven Bills had been babysitting and was scheduled to stay the night but when his brother woke at 6am on August 10 he found his silver Ford Focus was missing along with Bills and £150 from a collection jar.

Then he spotted the message left by the 46-year-old and contacted police who warned his wife she was in danger while launching an urgent search for the missing man.

Bills was soon stopped driving along Darlaston Road, Wednesbury, Wolverhampton Crown Court was told by Mr Ian Ball, prosecuting.

Two wraps of cocaine bought by the defendant were found in the vehicle that has been returned undamaged to his brother who has also been repaid the stolen £150.

Steven and his wife's seven-year relationship broke down in September 2017 after he assaulted her, the court heard.

She said he was a "vindictive bully" whose behaviour needed to be stopped and continued: "It is getting worse. I don't want my children growing up amid this kind of behaviour and thinking it is right.

"A restraining order will make him realise this."

She last saw him in January and the social services department decided the children should not have any more contact with him, a decision which Ms Nicole Steers, defending, said drove him to behave as he did.

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She explained: "He had been babysitting his brother's children and felt worthless because he had no contact with his own.

"The relationship ended because of his violent behaviour and, when arrested, he did not seek to hide from the truth.

"He pulled his head out of the sand for the first time and realises he is not well. He has been having professional mental help since this happened."

Bills, from Essington Way, Essington, admitted taking a car without permission, harassing his former partner, theft, possession of drugs and driving without either insurance or valid licence.

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He was handed a four-month prison sentence suspended for 18 months on condition he completes a rehabilitation course, does 80 hours unpaid work, pays £200 towards the cost of the case and obeys an 18-month restraining order banning any contact with his former partner.

Recorder Nicholas Bacon QC said: "You took the law into your on hands after losing contact with your children and threatened to kill their mother.

"You now have experts helping you out of the mental and physical hole you found yourself in.

"Take legal advice over further contact with you children."

John Scott

By John Scott
Reporter/News Feature Writer

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