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Crash man arrested after ex-partner stabbed

By North Devon Journal  |  Posted: March 08, 2012

  • DESTRUCTION: The scene of the crash in Westward Ho! in which Mr Vose suffered serious injuries. @Picture: Rob Tibbles. Ref: BNRT20120303D-006_C


A BUSINESSMAN injured when his luxury car crashed into a wall was arrested after his former partner was found at her home with multiple stab wounds.

The pair were recovering in separate hospitals as the Journal went to press yesterday.

Bridget Hearn was in intensive care at North Devon District Hospital (NDDH) with multiple stab wounds to her back, arms and abdomen. It is thought she sustained the injuries at her home in Churchill Way, Northam, early on Saturday morning.

Her former partner Paul Vose, 65, was taken to hospital after the silver Audi TT Quattro he was driving smashed into a wall in Westward Ho! at 1.20am on Saturday. Mr Vose was yesterday under police guard at Derriford Hospital in Plymouth. He has serious chest, leg and arm injuries.

While in hospital police arrested him on suspicion of attempted murder.

Mr Vose, who owns Kopy-Kat Printers in Bideford, had to be cut free from the car by firefighters after the crash at the corner of Atlantic Way and Beach Road.

He was initially taken by paramedics to NDDH but later transferred to Derriford by air ambulance.

Police said he was suffering from a nasty chest injury which had damaged one of his main arteries.

Police discovered Bridget's injuries when officers called at the couple's former home at around 2.40am. She was taken to NDDH where she was said to be in a serious but stable condition.

It's understood the couple had recently separated.

One neighbour said he was very shocked by the news, and described Mr Vose as a nice man. He said he had heard an argument at the house at around 6.30pm on Friday.

It is understood the couple had split up a week ago and Bridget had been away, returning on Friday.

Sasha Essery, who lives in a flat at the junction of Atlantic Way and Nelson Road, was first on the scene after the crash.

Mrs Essery, a mum, said: "I was awake at the time of the crash and heard a loud bang, which was amplified by the baby monitor. I went to the car and reached in to turn the engine off and supported the driver as he came out of the door. I checked his pulse and breathing and then a doctor and nurse arrived on the scene so I stepped back."

Mrs Essery also alerted the police. She said the driver was not wearing a seat belt and she did not think he had been drinking. She thought the car must have been travelling at speed.

A police spokesman said: "There has been a domestic incident and one person has been taken to hospital with serious injuries and is receiving treatment for her injuries.

"The other party involved in the domestic was later involved in a serious RTC."

This is not the first time Mr Vose has featured in the Journal. He hit the headlines in 2003 for confiscating 42 footballs which had landed in his garden from the Appledore Football Club.

His garden lies right behind one of the goals at the ground, and he became fed-up with players trampling through his garden to retrieve their balls.

He eventually handed back the balls at the end of the season and the club installed higher netting.

At the time Mr Vose said: "I haven't got a problem with the balls coming over, what I do have a problem with is people breaking through my fence, wandering around my property and swearing in front of my daughters.

"I also have livestock here and unless I repair my fence immediately they would have eight horses, six sheep and a couple of geese wandering around their ground."

The police now want to speak to anyone who witnessed the car crash or the run up to it.

Anyone with any information is asked to call 101 quoting crime reference number CD/12/426.

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