Accused Family Court bomber Leonard John Warwick. Picture: AAP
Accused Family Court bomber Leonard John Warwick. Picture: AAP

‘Warwick assaulted me’: ex-wife testifies

The night Andrea Blanchard left her abusive husband Leonard John Warwick for good, she was so badly beaten she couldn't lift their baby daughter out of the cot and had to leave her behind as she fled their home, a Sydney court has heard.

It was not the first time the young wife had run away and called her father from a pay phone to rescue her, and not the first time she'd been hospitalised from Warwick's violence, Ms Blanchard told her estranged partner's murder trial.

Accused Family Court bomber Leonard John Warwick. Picture: AAP
Accused Family Court bomber Leonard John Warwick. Picture: AAP

 

"He started punching me and then pushed me down onto the floor and started kicking me," she told the NSW Supreme Court.

"I was screaming so he let me go and I ran into the bedroom to try to get Trudi to dress her and I couldn't lift her out of the cot."

Their relationship ended late that night in March 1979, but a bitter and allegedly deadly custody dispute was only just beginning.

Warwick, 71, is accused of embarking on a murderous campaign against the Family Court nearly 40 years ago as he fought for access to their only child.

 

Andrea Blanchard leaves the Supreme Court in Sydney. Picture: AAP
Andrea Blanchard leaves the Supreme Court in Sydney. Picture: AAP

 

Prosecutors allege The former firefighter was behind a string of shootings and bombings which killed four people including Ms Blanchard's brother.

The court heard the controlling husband started bashing her five months after their wedding in October 1974, and forbade Ms Blanchard from learning to drive a car or seeing her family.

After their daughter was born Warwick didn't allow Ms Blanchard to have her own set of keys to their Casula home, so she pressed a key into a cake of soap while he was in the shower and cut herself a set, the judge-alone trial was told on Thursday.

The 1984 family court bombing in Parramatta.
The 1984 family court bombing in Parramatta.

 

Warwick has pleaded not guilty to 24 charges stemming from several high profile attacks in the 1980s.

He allegedly bombed two judges' homes, the Parramatta Family Court and a Jehovah's Witness congregation, as well as the fatal shooting of a third judge and his brother-in-law Stephen Blanchard.

Ms Blanchard said Warwick's father was a miner and he had a keen interest in guns and hunting, while his defence lawyer Alan Conolly has argued his client didn't have the skills to carry out the attacks.

The six-month trial before Justice Peter Garling continues.



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