Man denies having sex with ex-wife's bull mastiff dog


A man accused of having sex with his ex-wife's bull mastiff dog has told a court the allegation is a “total lie”.

Kelly Thacker claims to have found her ex-husband Nicholas Saunders, 46, in her bed having intercourse with the animal on January 15 last year.

Ms Thacker, who has teenage twins with Saunders, told Gloucester Crown Court on Monday she had rejected Saunders advances towards her and was shocked to find him having sex with her dog, Sasha, soon afterwards.

But today the father-of-three said he merely "tolerated" his ex-wife for the sake of their children and it was in fact Ms Thacker who had been wanting to get back together with him.

He said he was in total shock following the allegation and denied having sex with the dog.

The court heard Saunders, who had remained on good terms with his ex-wife, went to her house following an argument with his girlfriend who was bi-polar.

Giving his account of what happened he said: "I had a fall out with Sue and it was late and I didn't have anywhere else to stay.

"My intention was just to sleep on the sofa until the morning and sort things out with Sue in the morning.

"I knocked on the door and she (Ms Thacker) answered and made me a cup of coffee.

"We went upstairs to watch TV because the downstairs TV wasn't working.

"We went to Kelly's bedroom. Both dogs were in the bedroom, on the bed."

Saunders told the court they watched TV for a short time before he got undressed to go to sleep.

"I stripped down to my boxer shorts to go to bed because I was tired and she (Ms Thacker) went downstairs.

"I checked on the girls and gave them a kiss goodnight and went back to the bedroom.

"I stripped off totally and went to sleep. I usually sleep naked."

Saunders said he was asleep for a couple of hours before he was woken up.

"I was woken by the dog, Sasha, licking my face. I pushed her away as I'm not a fan of that, and got up to use the toilet.

"As I got up to use the toilet Kelly came into the bedroom and started having a go at me, her specific words to me were 'I suppose you'd rather shag the dog, than me'.

"I thought she was a nutcase. Mad. I changed and left."

Saunders said he slept in his van overnight before going to work, where he was arrested that afternoon.

He was taken to Stroud Police Station where he was interviewed under caution.

A transcript of the interview was read to the court, in which Saunders said his ex-wife had seen him "climbing over the dog" to get out of bed to use the toilet.

Following the interview Saunders provided police with an "intimate sample" - a swab taken from his penis.

Forensic examination later showed a 100% match for the DNA of a domestic dog, although the court heard it was not possible to tell the type of dog, its sex or the source of the DNA.

Claire Stangoe, a forensic scientist who specialises in the transfer of DNA, added the DNA could have been transferred on to Saunders' penis in a number of scenarios.

Sarah Jenkins, defending, asked Saunders why he had provided the sample. He replied: "I had nothing to hide. I hadn't done anything."

He added when he was told the results of the tests he was "in total shock".

"I couldn't believe it," he said.

"I just didn't believe it, I couldn't work it out, couldn't understand it.

"There was no explanation whatsoever."

Ms Jenkins also asked her client what he thought about the allegation Ms Thacker had made against him.

"The allegation is a total lie," he replied.

Saunders and Ms Thacker married in 1999 but separated in 2002, the court heard.

Asked about his relationship with his ex-wife, Saunders said: "I tolerated her for the sake of the children. It wasn't a friendship."

The court was previously told by Ms Thacker that Saunders had said to her dog: "You've just ruined my chances" - meaning he had hoped to have sex with his ex-wife.

But when asked about the comment by Frank Abbott, prosecuting, Saunders denied ever making the comment.

He added there had been nothing from his side to suggest that he had wanted to sleep with Ms Thacker that night.

During the police interview, Saunders said: "She wanted me back. She's been trying to get me back for three months, but I said no.

"I think she thought she had an opportunity that night because I'd split up with my girlfriend."

He added Ms Thacker had got "shirty" with him and that's when he left the house.

"She's the type of person that unless she's got some kind of drama or crisis going on she hasn't got a life, she's always been like that," he said.

Saunders, from Fairford, near Cirencester, Gloucestershire, has pleaded not guilty to having intercourse with an animal.

Mr Abbott said it was an "incredible coincidence" that DNA was found on a "fairly inaccessible" part of Saunders, backing up what Ms Thacker told the court she had seen.

Saunders said: "She's made up a lying story and has been incredibly lucky."

Mr Abbott went on: "Do you seriously suggest that someone would make up a story about you having sex with a dog to get their own back just because you wouldn't have sex with them?"

Saunders replied: "With her it doesn't surprise me, yes,"

Summing up the case Mr Abbott told the jury that for Ms Thacker to have made up the allegation would be an "unbelievable, wicked thing to do".

He added: "Why on earth would she suddenly turn around and make up this awful story?"

The trial was adjourned until tomorrow morning, when the judge will continue summing up and the jury will to retire to consider the verdict.


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