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Woman may never see properly again after jealous boyfriend fractured her left eye socket

When Adele met Matthew Hayes, she thought all her dreams had come true – until a horrific attack changed everything.

A domestic abuse survivor who may never see properly again after her savage ex-boyfriend fractured her left eye socket during a brutal attack has urged other women to leave their abusive partners before it is too late.

Vulnerable and down on her luck when she met jealous brute Matthew Hayes, 31, through the dating website Plenty of Fish, Adele Semple, 31, of Oldham, Greater Manchester, was soon under his thumb, culminating in a violent assault on January 12 this year, when she returned home with the weekly shop.

Accusing Adele of having an affair, Hayes, of Bolton, Greater Manchester, flew into a volcanic rage – despite his friend being there to witness his explosion – hitting her so hard she flew across the bedroom, before pinning her down and punching her repeatedly across the head.

Adele before injuries (PA Real/Collect)

The friend, who saw him grab a perfume bottle and threaten to “smash her up,” luckily called the police, who arrested Hayes, while Adele was taken to Royal Bolton Hospital, so her injuries could be treated.

When Hayes appeared at Bolton Crown Court On April 25, where he pleaded guilty to common assault and was jailed for 29 months, as well as being given a five-year restraining order preventing him from contacting Adele, Judge Graeme Smith told him: “You punched her as hard as you could. There is no reason whatsoever why you should punch her in that way.

“She’s still affected by it. She has described it as having a massive impact on her and I would have to agree.”

Adele after injuries (PA Real/Collect)

But Adele feels that her injuries mean she is serving a far harsher sentence than the monster who attacked her.

She said: “I couldn’t believe it when he got slapped with just 29 months in prison.

“I might never be able to see properly again out of my left eye, while he’ll no doubt be out of prison in a year and a half.”

 

“I just hope that other people don’t make the same mistake I did. If your man starts showing tell-tale signs of being violent, then he probably is,” she added.

Following a messy break up, Adele met Hayes through the dating website, Plenty of Fish, in October 2017 and he asked her out on a date in Little Lever, Bolton, where he lived.

“I’ve been on Plenty of Fish a couple of times and more often than not the blokes were all a bit weird,” Adele said.

Adele and Hayes (PA Real/Collect)

She continued: “Then I got a message from Matthew Hayes and I liked what I saw.”

Life in the run-up to their meeting had been tough for Adele, who had lost her job picking and packing at JD Sports, and, unable to afford rent, was living in a hostel.

So, the trip out to Hayes’ home came as a welcome break and she instantly clicked with her new admirer.

She said: “I immediately felt comfortable with Matt. He listened to what I had to say and made me feel special.

“I’ve not had the best time with men in the past, so just having someone who seemed genuinely interested and seemed to care was such a nice change.”

Because of her insecure circumstances, when Hayes suggested she should move in with him after a month together she jumped at the chance.”

 

“Looking back, it was clearly too quick to move in with someone, but I’d just lost my job and I could only live in the hostel for so long,” she continued.

“Matt lived with his mum and they agreed I could move in with them.

“At the time, it felt like he was my hero, my knight in shining armour.”

Adele and her mum (PA Real/Collect)

But, within a matter of weeks, Hayes’ behaviour started to change and at a New Year’s Eve party in 2017, he showed his true colours.

She said: “Matt had insisted that we go to his friend’s party and being the bubbly person that I was back then I struck up a conversation with some lad.

“There was nothing to it, but the next thing I knew Matt came over scowling and demanding that we were going home.”

 
 
 
 
 
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There must be greater recognition of the risk of suicide among victims of domestic abuse and increased provision of specialist services for survivors and their children.

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“He’d got it in to his head that I was flirting with the bloke and wouldn’t let it lie,” she added.

At first Adele looked past Hayes’ jealousy, focusing instead on how caring and supportive he had been at the start of their relationship.

But she now knows that he had displayed tell-tale signs of the controlling and abusive behaviour that was to come.

“Looking back, I can’t believe I didn’t do anything at the time but I was in a hopeless situation,” she continued.

“For weeks, everything would be fine and then out of nowhere he’d fly off the handle, then suddenly he’d love me and say he couldn’t live without me again.

“It’s clear now he was just trying to mess with my head – and it worked.”

 

Then, on January 12 2019 Hayes’ controlling behaviour reached a climax when Adele returned from the local Asda after doing the weekly shop.

Instead of helping her to unpack, Hayes immediately accused her of having an affair.

She said: “It didn’t make any sense. I’d gone to do the weekly shop on my way home and suddenly he was attacking me.”

Adele after injuries (PA Real/Collect)

After threatening to assault her with a perfume bottle if she did not leave the house, at her wits’ end, Adele admits she snapped, telling him, ‘Go on then – just do it.’

To her horror, he erupted, chasing her upstairs into their bedroom, where he hit her so hard she went flying across the bed onto the floor.

Then, in a boiling rage, he pinned her to the floor, before punching her across the face, walloping her left eye.

Adele after injuries (PA Real/Collect)

She recalled: “I never thought he’d actually attack me the way he did.

“We were at loggerheads, then all of a sudden something just switched in him and I knew it was going to be bad.

“The last thing I remember is him being on top of me and then a loud cracking sound.”

 

Hearing her screaming in agony, Hayes’ friend called emergency services, who arrested the thug, while Adele was taken to Royal Bolton Hospital.

There she was treated for a fractured eye socket, as well as bruising to her forehead, arms, legs and thighs.

Three months later, on April 26, Hayes’ admitted the assault and was jailed for 29 months, as well as being handed a five-year restraining order.

Adele and a friend (PA Real/Collect)

Now Adele, who still suffers from headaches and double vision, is hoping to raise awareness and help other women act before it’s too late.

She said: “My life is in tatters and it’s taken all I have to carry on and keep going.

“I’ve got PTSD and depression after what Matt put me through and sometimes it feels like I won’t be able to make it to the next day.”

Adele after injuries (PA Real/Collect)

She concluded: “To any women out there who notice their partners acting controlling, don’t wait until it’s too late to get out.

“Your partner should never treat you less than you are, if they do run for the hills – don’t make the same mistake I did.”