Cambridgeshire

Peterborough murder trial: Wife of accused 'was scared of him'

Ligita Kostiajeviene Image copyright Cambridgeshire Police
Image caption Andriejus Kostiajevas denies murdering his wife of 20 years Ligita Kostiajeviene

The daughter of a man accused of murdering his wife in a knife and hammer attack told a court her mother had been "scared" of him.

Andriejus Kostiajevas, 47, is accused of killing Ligita Kostiajeviene, 42, in Cromwell Road, Peterborough on 2 July.

Their daughter told a jury he would regularly be violent towards her mother and she had planned to call police as she "had enough of what was happening".

Mr Kostiajevas denies murder, attempted murder and wounding with intent.

Stuart Trimmer QC, prosecuting, previously told Cambridge Crown Court Mr Kostiajevas attacked his wife in their bedroom before resuming later when she "retreated" to the corner of another room.

Their daughter Viktorija Kostiajevaite said her mother "was scared at times of him".

"I would say 'divorce him if you're not happy'," Ms Kostiajevaite, who worked with her mother in a cosmetic factory, said.

The 23-year-old also told the court her father had spat at her and slapped her face at separate times, but she felt incidents of violence to her were irregular.

Ms Kostiajevaite told jurors violence towards her mother was "regular" and she had told her father "you're not a man if you treat a woman like this".

Image copyright Terry-Harris.com
Image caption Emergency services vehicles in Cromwell Road, Peterborough

On the morning of 2 July, Ms Kostiajevaite said she had asked her mother: "Why are you living with him? Are you not scared of him?"

Ms Kostiajevaite told the jury her mother responded "I know".

She said she told her mother she would call the police after she returned home from work, adding: "I was afraid and scared and had enough of what was happening."

Mr Trimmer said Ms Kostiajeviene was pronounced dead later that day, having sustained a broken skull and multiple stab wounds.

Mr Kostiajevas denies murder, attempted murder of a child in the same attack, wounding with intent, unlawful wounding and assault on an emergency worker.

Rosina Cottage QC, defending, said it was not "his actions that are in dispute but what was in his mind at the time".

The trial continues.

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