Mum trapped by abuser for years escapes thanks to hero midwives’ secret codes

A brave mum-of-two managed to escape her abusive partner after staff at a neonatal clinic made up secret codes to get her help.

Holly Jepson was cut off from her family, friends and the 'outside world' in the sparse flat on the eighth floor of a tower block that she shared with her 'egotistical, narcissistic abuser' Thomas Frosbrook.

A judge said the evil 33-year-old drug addict treated Holly, 23, as 'nothing more than an object to satisfy [his] demands' as he subjected her to 'physical and psychological abuse on a regular basis.'

But Holly – and her young daughter with Fosbrook, who was present during the violence and degradation – managed to break free from his manipulation thanks to the compassion of midwives, Manchester Evening News reports.

After falling pregnant with their second child, Holly confided in staff at a neonatal clinic and they devised a series of codes like 'mixed-up blood test results' to arrange appointments with her to check on her without Fosbrook knowing, a court heard.

It led to Holly managing to send an email of evidence in secret to her mother, who alerted police leading to Fosbrook's arrest in May.

Minshull Street Crown Court heard he met Holly, who was working at the same restaurant, in January 2019 and they quickly moved in together.

In a distressing case of domestic violence, the court heard Fosbrook sold most of the furniture in the flat to fund his drug habit.

He forced Holly to cut ties with her mother, removed doors from the flat so he could constantly see her and even painted over the windows of the living room and kitchen so no one could see inside, despite being on the eighth floor, according to prosecutor Rachel Widdicombe.

The court heard Fosbrook slept 'closest to the door to stop her leaving' and 'had control of the only mobile phone in the house'.

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Widdicombe added that the abuser kept a hammer hidden under the sofa and had threatened to kill her, which she believed he would do.

The prosecutor said: "He assaulted her numerous times, but refused to allow her to go to the hospital. She was in genuine fear for her life."

The court heard Fosbrook even refused to allow Holly dental treatment, resulting in her removing her own braces with a pair of pliers.

But after all that, Holly told of how she 'seized the opportunity to confide in the midwives.

In a heartbreaking statement read to the court, she said: "This would have been my only chance at a cry for help as I was able to speak to the midwives without the presence of Tom monitoring what I am saying to the professionals due to Covid restrictions.

"They helped me to contact my mother after two years of not speaking, and I was able to email my mum all of the details of what had been happening.

"The detail in my email was enough evidence for the police to arrest Tom, and have me escorted out of the flat to finally be back with my family."

Holly said she, her daughter and her son were now 'in a familiar and loving environment, surrounded by my close family and friends'.

"Now that I am away from him, I am only just starting to learn to love myself, and rebuild the confidence which he had shattered," she added.

"I am determined to be the best and strongest person, and mother, that I can be for my children."

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Fosbrook, of Hanover Towers in Lancashire Hill, Stockport, is now starting a three-year prison sentence after admitting a charge of coercive and controlling behaviour.

He was also handed a restraining order for an indefinite period.

Holly wanted to share her story to give hope to other women living with domestic violence.

Holly added: "I understand now that when you are in a relationship with an egotistical, narcissistic, abuser, there is no such thing as love. No matter how much they make you feel that you are loved, that your children are loved, you are nothing but a target for them.

"I desperately hope that he is never given the chance to destroy another woman's life."

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