Dramatic moment shirtless and ‘drunk’ bank executive arrested for choking woman with Polair above
A high-flying Commonwealth bank executive was dramatically arrested while shirtless, bloodied and intoxicated after allegedly assaulting his wife and choking her cousin, a court has heard.
Police statements tendered to Sydney’s Manly Local Court describe the moment Rohan Ritchie was handcuffed as he protested ‘this is unf***ing believable’ and repeatedly asked, ‘are you for real?’ at his home on the city’s northern beaches.
A police constable – one of four officers called to Ritchie’s property after midnight on May 14 last year to investigate ‘a possible strangulation’ – replied: ‘Yes, Rohan, unfortunately we are.’
A senior constable instructed her fellow officer to allow Ritchie to be cuffed with his hands to the front rather than behind his back as another officer stepped in to search him while a police helicopter hovered above.
After saying, ‘yeah, go for it,’ Ritchie then said. ‘This is bulls**t. This is f***ing bulls**t. Oh my God this is bulls**t, I’ll tell you what.’
He then said twice ‘I’m f***ing cold’ and demanded a shirt before being taken in a caged truck to Manly Police Station – where he would be charged and spend a night in the cells as he sobered up.
Rohan Ritchie has been charged with assaulting his wife of 16 years Trudi (above the couple together) after police and a Polair helicopter were called to their house at midnight
Police found the Commonwealth bank Executive Manager of Everyday Banking shirtless and locked out in his backyard and when they tried to handcuff him he protested ‘this is unf***ing believable’
Ritchie, who manages the Commonwealth Bank’s Everyday accounts and Retail FX, has previously been the face of the bank for counselling consumers about Father’s Day and Christmas spending.
More recently, he publicly advised bank customers about using digital wallets rather than credit cards amid the decline of cash transactions during the Covid pandemic.
Ritchie’s wife of 16 years and mother of his two children, Trudi Ritchie, is a qualified paramedical beauty therapist and consultant who runs her own business network promoting a vegan skincare brand.
In Instagram posts before and since the alleged assaults, Ms Ritchie calls her husband ‘Bubba’, my ‘hot hubby’ and writes that ‘true love stories never have endings – there is only one happiness in life, to love and be loved’.
Mr Ritchie has been charged with two counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, one count each of common assault against his wife and her cousin, and one count of intentionally choke person without consent.
Court documents include a letter from Ritchie’s solicitor entering pleas of not guilty to all five charges – and an indication he denied the assault allegations during a police interview.
Trudi Ritchie and her husband, Commbank executive Rohan Ritchie, were interviewed by police at their Northern Beaches home in May last year, nine days after their 15th wedding anniversary
Police found Commbank exec Rohan Ritchie shirtless and ‘intoxicated’ in the back yard of his Bilgola Plateau house (above, in 2018 after its build) with blood and smashed glass inside
Polair directed four officers to the Ritchies’ (left) home around midnight after an alleged ‘possible strangulation’ by the Commonwealth Bank’s Executive Manager of Everyday Accounts and Retail FX
Ritchie’s barrister was unsuccessful in a bid to withdraw a paramedics’ report in which Ms Ritchie ‘stated her husband has a temper and when he drinks alcohol and is stressed … has [allegedly] physically assaulted’ in the past.
The court heard Ms Ritchie ‘expressly disavowed’ in a statement to police last December that her husband had ever assaulted her, or had been violent towards her, The Australian reported,
In accounts by police and Ritchie’s teenage son seen by Daily Mail Australia, the scene inside the home on the night in question included ‘blood spatter … and a large amount of smashed glass’ after alcohol consumption had begun in the afternoon.
When called to the house at 11.55pm to investigate the alleged assaults, officers wearing bodycam were directed by Polair 9 helicopter overhead to ‘a male sitting on … a lounge on the deck at the rear of the property’.
One officer observed Ritchie was ‘wearing shorts, no shirt, he was barefoot … his right leg had small amounts of blood on it and next to (him) was a blood-soaked shirt’.
In the officer’s statement, he said that when he asked where the blood was from, Ritchie replied, ‘I tripped over there, the f***ing fire pit’.
Rohan and Trudi Ritchie appear to be jetsetters in frequent posts on her Instagram page which show the couple in Colorado, Miami and at other international destinations
Mr Ritchie, who has been married to his wife Trudi for 16 years, is due in Manly Local Court in October on five charges to which he has entered pleas of not guilty
Ritchie ‘appeared intoxicated due to the slurring manner in which he was speaking, along with his bloodshot eyes’.
After a woman inside the house let them in, police observed smashed glass between a lounge suite and dining table, blood-stained paper towels and a table napkin, bottles of alcohol and cocktail-making ‘instruments’.
Officers conducted recorded Domestic Violence-related Evidence in Chief (DVEC) interviews with Ritchie’s wife and her cousin, and photographed a 5cm laceration on the foot of the latter.
Ritchie’s wife was, according to a female officer’s statement, ’emotional and was not immediately forthright in giving a version’ of events, however her cousin described what had allegedly occurred.
Roihan Ritchie (above with his wife Trudi) has worked for the Commonwealth Bank for 12 years and is a former account manager for Linfox Armaguard
Mr Ritchie’s Commbank job entails ‘defining and executing the Retail Bank’s transaction account, debit card and retail FX portfolio strategy in order to deliver positive customer, shareholder, risk and people outcomes’
Police said in tendered statements they observed blood on the white t-shirt of the accused’s 14-year-old son, who was uninjured.
A female senior police constable told Ritchie he was under arrest for alleged domestic assault ‘on your wife Trudi and the cousin’ and read him his rights.
When she asked him to stand up he said ‘OK’, but when she asked him to turn around to be handcuffed, he said, ‘are you for real’ for the first time.
Told it was ‘just procedure’, Ritchie said, ‘oh my God, my kids mate, I am not going to do anything’, the senior constable’s statement said.
Reassured by a 29-year-old male officer that ‘your kids won’t see this, Ritchie replied, ‘this is unf***ing believable. Are you for real?’
Police took Ritchie to Manly station at 1.15am, where he was placed in a custody dock and watched for his level of intoxication over the next five hours before being released on bail at 6.39am.
When a female senior police constable told Mr Ritchie to turn around to be handcuffed, he said, ‘are you for real’ and then told an officer ‘this is unf***ing believable’
It was reported that Rohan Ritchie’s wife had ‘expressly disavowed’ to police last December that he had assaulted her, and his barrister Sebastian De Brennan objected to having a paramedic’s report about a conversation with Mrs Ritchie included as evidence
Five days later, police took a statement from Ritchie’s teenage son, in which the boy described hearing from his bedroom upstairs his mother turning up the music and his father telling her to turn it down.
He said an argument ensued and then he allegedly heard ‘a loud bang come from downstairs in the living room area which was a glass table smashing on to the ground’.
When he went downstairs he claims in his statement that he saw his mother ‘lying on her stomach’ and his ‘aunty’ – ‘with my dad in a headlock … pushing and shoving one another’.
The woman allegedly ‘tried to take a swing at dad and missed and then dad slapped (her) in the face’.
According to the boy’s statement, further confrontation between his parents and aunty occurred before he intervened and took his father outside ‘to calm him down’ before his aunty called police.
He said that she allegedly ‘had a big cut on her foot. Mum had a bump on her head’ and that the three adults ‘had been drinking since late afternoon’.
On their 16th wedding anniversary this year, 12 months after the alleged incident, Trudi Ritchie posted lyrics to the song ‘I Get to Love You’ and described her husband as ‘my love, my life, my everything’
He told police ‘things have been fine’ between his parents since, although the incident left him ‘shaken, sad and mad’.
Trudi Ritchie has posted on Instagram loving image of herself with her husband holidaying in at the beach in Miami, and skiing in Colorado and elsewhere, which she has tagged ‘#hubbyandwifey’ and ‘#hubbylove’.
On their 16th wedding anniversary in May this year, she posted the lyrics and audio of American pop singer Ruelle’s hit, ‘I Get to Love You’, with an Instagram video of their life together, saying ‘Happy Anniversary my Bubba, My eyes always search for you in a crowd – my love, my life, my everything’.
The five charges against Ritchie are next listed at court on October 24.