The fiancée of a defendant accused of murdering an Ipswich man who turned up at their house at night and banged at their windows with a baseball bat has told a court she thought he was trying to get into the house.

Giving evidence at Ipswich Crown Court on Tuesday, Debbie Cotterill-Williams said she had been in bed at her home in Ipswich Avenue, Sutton Heath, when she heard loud banging and had called 999 because she was “very frightened”.

She said as well as the banging on the windows she heard a loud crashing noise as a scooter was thrown on the roof.

“It sounded like the roof was coming in it was so loud,” said Ms Cotterill-Williams.

She said Jay Cotterill, to whom she has recently become engaged, had been in the shower and had put on some jeans before going outside.

In a recording of her 999 call played to the jury Ms Cotterill-Williams can be heard pleading with the operator to get police officers to her home as quickly as possible.

At one stage she told the operator Cotterill had come back into the house with blood on his face and said he’d been hit on the head with a baseball bat and had his nose bitten by 37-year-old Richard Hunt, who he is accused of murdering.

She also said that Cotterill had said he would protect her and that she had seen him with a knife.

East Anglian Daily Times: Jay Cotterill is on trial accused of murderJay Cotterill is on trial accused of murder (Image: Dominic Bareham)

Cotterill, 43, of Ipswich Avenue, Sutton Heath, has denied murdering Mr Hunt and an alternative charge of manslaughter.

He has also denied assaulting Mr Hunt’s former partner Stephanie Harvey causing her actual bodily harm.

The court has heard that prior to Mr Hunt and his former partner Ms Harvey driving to Ms Cotterill-Williams' home in October last year, there had been an exchange of threatening texts and phone calls between Mr Hunt and Cotterill after Ms Cotterill-Williams found text messages on Cotterill’s phone between him and Ms Harvey.

Ms Harvey had decided to deliver a card wishing Ms Cotterill-Williams luck in her relationship with Cotterill and was driven to Sutton Heath by Mr Hunt, who she’d been in a 13-year relationship before they split up seven years ago.

She told police that after she left the card at the front door Mr Hunt had used a baseball bat that had been in the back of the car to bang on windows of the property and she also saw him throw a scooter on to a roof.

Ms Harvey said Cotterill had come out in his boxer shorts and there had been a fight between the two men during which Mr Hunt was stabbed.

The trial continues.