Nfld. & Labrador

Ray Newman claims he's the victim in domestic violence case

A man on trial in a domestic violence case in St. John's testified that he was the victim.

Charged with assault, accused takes stand to say his girlfriend attacked him

Ray Newman, acquitted of murdering his estranged wife in 2007, says he was attacked by the former girlfriend he's accused of assaulting. (Glenn Payette/CBC)

A man on trial in a domestic violence case in provincial court in St. John's has testified that he was the victim.

Raymond Newman, 40, is charged with assaulting his former girlfriend in Paradise last September.

In 2012, Newman was acquitted of murdering his estranged wife, Chrissy Predham-Newman, in an apartment in Airport Heights in St. John's five years earlier.

Newman told the court Thursday that he and Nicole Young began dating around July 2015, and that about a year later, she told him she had a problem with crack cocaine.

Newman claims ex-girlfiend was drunk

He said on the night of the alleged assault, he and Young went to Westside Charlie's in Paradise and each had about five or six beers and three or four shots, and that she got drunk.

In response to questioning from his lawyer, Brian Wentzell, Newman said he wanted to leave because Young approached someone in the bar about buying drugs, and also because he had to work the next day.

Newman said the relationship had been in trouble for months because of Young's drug use, and that they had broken up frequently.

"I told her I wouldn't be in a relationship with someone doing drugs," Newman testified. "I don't do it. I don't want to be around it."

Newman was questioned Thursday by his lawyer Brian Wentzell. The Crown will question Newman when the trial resumes June 1. (Glenn Payette/CBC)

He said most of their arguments were about drugs, and that when they got into the truck to go home, he said he told her he wouldn't have it in his life. "She punched me in the face," he said.

Newman said it was about a five-minute ride to his place, where they had been living together. He said the bickering continued, but he went to bed and she left.

He said he woke up later, and she was on him, punching him again, and he pushed her off.

Newman said she was throwing things around, but they did talk.

Get married?

"It seems silly, given the situation, but she was asking, 'Why can't we get married?'" said Newman. "I said, 'Are you kidding? I don't want to be in a relationship with you anymore.'"

Newman says Young left, but he was afraid she would come back, so he called the police.

The call came into the RNC's communications centre at 5:04 a.m. The police didn't respond until 4:31 p.m. that day.

On the stand, Sgt. Paul Fifield, who is with the communications division, testified Newman's call was a Priority 2, which meant it should have seen a police response within 30 minutes.

Fifield had no specific reason for the delay to the call, but he said there were 67 calls in that time span, higher that the normal 45 during a day shift.

Meanwhile, Newman said, Young did return, but just got a blanket and said she was going to sleep in the truck.

He said as he was leaving for work, he knocked on a truck window and asked her what happened last night. He said she told him she didn't know, and went into the house to go to bed.

The case is back in court June 1.


Glenn Payette


A veteran journalist with more than 30 years' experience, Glenn Payette is a videojournalist with CBC News in St. John's.