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Alleged rapist stabbed, strangled and forced woman's head underwater, court hears

PUBLISHED: 12:51 05 November 2019 | UPDATED: 12:51 05 November 2019

Nathan Atkins has gone on trial at Norwich Crown Court for a series of offences including rape. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

Nathan Atkins has gone on trial at Norwich Crown Court for a series of offences including rape. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

Jamie Honeywood Archant Norwich Norfolk

A woman was stabbed, strangled and raped by a man who forced her head underwater and threatened to kill her, a court heard.

Nathan Atkins, 28, is accused of a series of offences against the woman, who cannot be named, including rape, assaults and making a threat to kill her.

Christopher Wing, who opened the prosecution case on Tuesday (November 5), said Atkins followed her "everywhere" and also "not only caused her to fear violence but actually used violence against her".

On one occasion while they were watching a programme on television where someone was strangled with a wedding veil, Mr Wing said Atkins then "started strangling her with a pair of tracksuit bottoms".

There was then a scuffle during which he grabbed her and she thought she had suffered two broken fingers, although they were found to be badly sprained.

Mr Wing described another occasion when Atkins twice "forced himself" on her and raped her after "demanding sex".

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The jury of seven men and five women were also told about an incident when Atkins picked up a blue-handled knife and stabbed her in the stomach.

Following on from that, Atkins followed her into a bathroom and "forced her head under the water for about three seconds".

On another occasion Mr Wing said during another scuffle Atkins hit her head against the radiator which caused bruising and a lump on her head.

He was later arrested and interviewed - but then made threats to kill her via text, stating he knew where she was and would be "coming with four men to kill her".

When interviewed by police he told officers that "nothing really happened".

Atkins, of Ber Street, Norwich, has pleaded not guilty to two counts of rape and one of threatening to kill the woman.

He has also denied other charges, including unlawful wounding, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, and two counts of assault by beating.

The trial continues.

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