Monday 29 May 2017

Real Housewives star Dawn Ward punched pop singer Sinitta, trial hears

Sinitta outside Westminster Magistrates' Court
Sinitta outside Westminster Magistrates' Court

Nina Massey

Real Housewives Of Cheshire star Dawn Ward punched pop singer Sinitta during a heated discussion aimed at clearing the air between them, a court heard.

The altercation is alleged to have taken place at the Salmontini le Resto restaurant in central London on April 1 last year.

Ward, 42, who is married to former footballer Ashley Ward and features in the ITV reality show, is on trial at Westminster Magistrates' Court charged with one count of common assault.

Sinitta Malone, a close friend of Simon Cowell, is said to have arranged the meeting to talk about rumours that had been circulating.

Dawn Ward on The Real Housewives of Cheshire
Dawn Ward on The Real Housewives of Cheshire

Prosecutor Christian Wheeliker said: "The Crown's case is that Ms Malone and Ms Ward, and others, met to discuss rumours that had been circulating between the group.

"Ms Malone and Ms Ward argued and during that argument Ms Ward made physical contact with Ms Malone."

He added that the contact was in the shoulder or face area, and that Ward, of Alderley Edge, Cheshire, also threatened to "glass" the entertainer.

The court was shown CCTV of the incident, which shows the pair sitting at the table with two other women.

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 02: Sinitta and Louis Walsh attend the Music Industry Trusts Awards in aid of the Nordoff Robbins charity and BRIT Trust at The Grosvenor House Hotel on November 2, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 02: Sinitta and Louis Walsh attend the Music Industry Trusts Awards in aid of the Nordoff Robbins charity and BRIT Trust at The Grosvenor House Hotel on November 2, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)

Presenter Lizzie Cundy was also present at the restaurant and sat at the bar while the women met and talked, it was said.

In the footage Ward and Ms Malone can be seen having a heated argument with the footballer's wife gesticulating with her arms.

At one point she is seen allegedly shoving the singer in the chest.

Ms Malone, wearing a black dress with white pin-dot pattern and collar detail, and grey heels, took to the witness box to describe what she described as a "shocking" incident.

She said: "She was angry about what I was saying and she has just, you know, gotten angry, and jumped up and sort of shoved me.

"First of all she shoved me in my chest. The second time was like sort of hitting me in the face.

"At the same time I was quite shocked because I didn't really know what had happened, because I didn't really expect it to happen at all."

Ms Malone told the court she felt that, as someone who was a public personality, she was "embarrassed because there was lots of shouting and swearing".

She continued: "I was trying, I suppose, to save face - defuse everything. But it (the shove) was enough to feel, to hurt. I did feel it, it hurt."

In her statement to police, Ms Malone said she had been left feeling "bullied", "powerless", and "upset" by the alleged attack at the hands of Ward.

The entertainer said she had arranged the meeting in the hope of sitting down and clearing the air over a separate incident that occurred at a salon the previous month, but as she began to explain what had happened Ward became aggressive.

"She was telling me to shut my effing mouth, and all these kinds of things.

"At one point she threatened to put the glass in my face," said Ms Malone, adding that Ward had been drinking champagne.

She continued: "I was quite shocked and when I went home I started crying in the car.

"I am an entertainer, so I am used to trying to save face. When I started to digest what had happened, I was very upset. Very upset. And I felt helpless because this has happened and there is nothing I can do about it."

Lisa Judge, defending Ward, put it to Ms Malone that she only made her complaint to police after she was threatened with legal action following a tweet she posted on April 23 about the alleged scrap.

Asked why she posted the message, Ms Malone replied: "Because I thought it was my right to tweet it, to complain about the way I had been treated that day.

"Similarly, I tweet if I have had good day or a bad day."

The singer said that although the threat of legal action added, "insult to injury", she went to the police because she was trying "make a point that I'm not going to go away. You are in the wrong, you should not have done this".

"You can't go around around treating people like this."

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