A mother attacked by her drunken plumber boyfriend after she refused to have sex with him has opened up for the first time exactly why she rejected his advances.
Luana Dougherty, 49, said she nudged Alex Craig because he had recently FaceTimed her while having sex with someone else.
The rejection sparked a terrifying attack from Craig, 36, who even called his father Francis, 79, to join in as the couple unleashed a torrent of violence against Luana, her daughter Carlee and her boyfriend Finn McBride. , both 16 years old.
Luana told MailOnline in an exclusive interview that she “feared for her life” when the two men attacked.
The father and son assailants escaped with suspended sentences over the riot in Frodsham, Cheshire, when they appeared in court this week.
Alex and Luana in happier times. Alex Craig, a wealthy businessman denied sex by his mistress Luana Dougherty, enlisted his 78-year-old father Francis to “solve” her in a terrifying fit of revenge.
Luana told MailOnline in an exclusive interview that she ‘feared for her life’ when the two men attacked
When police later arrested the father and son, both claimed to have acted in self-defense and were sentenced to 18 months in prison, suspended for 18 months after admitting to a fight at Chester Crown Court.
Luana explained how her five-year relationship with the head of the £72,000 a year plumbing firm, Craig, had soured due to his drinking and cheating.
But she finally decided to call him one day in March after a night of drinking wine with him because of the explicit video he had previously sent her of him having sex with someone else a few weeks earlier.
“I couldn’t believe what I was seeing,” he said. “I took a screenshot and I knew I had to get out of this relationship.
After drinking wine the night before the fight, Luana said Craig kept drinking and finished a cooler full of beer.
Then the next morning, when his romantic overtures were rejected, he went into a frenzy and attacked Luana herself, as well as Carlee and Finn, bizarrely summoning her elderly father to join in.
‘When he’s drunk, there’s no stopping him,’ recalled Luana, a community support worker. There had been a few times before where he had gone crazy, but this was the worst. He was like a man possessed.
“It got into his head that I had taken his mobile because they are the same color, but I didn’t.
“It was all on a fairly remote farm where we were staying and we were all terrified of what would happen next,” he recalled.
He pushed Carlee to the ground and dragged her along as Finn tried to help her up.
Craig Jnr then pushed Finn onto the gravel before kicking him and throwing his bike at him as his father grabbed Carlee’s hair.
The young couple briefly took refuge in the bathroom, along with Carlee’s grandmother, who was also in the house, and called the police.
Both were subject to an indefinite restraining order that prohibits them from contacting Ms Dougherty (pictured), a community support worker in her 40s, and the teenagers.
Alex Craig kicked Carlee in the ribs before turning her attention to Finn, who had tried to intervene and had taken her father’s car keys.
Luana, who had left earlier in the confrontation, returned to the house to retrieve her mobile phone but was pushed by her partner.
‘He could hear his father yelling ‘pull his hair, pull his hair!’ and Alex was pulling out large clumps of hair. He really didn’t know what was going to happen next.
‘At a time like that, you really fear for your life.
‘I don’t know why he called his father, he’s a proper daddy’s boy.
They were using every item they could find to attack us. Alex threw a bike, an electric fan, and pool balls at Finn.
‘When they had me on the ground and they were pulling my hair, Finn saw the old man’s keys and grabbed them to stop them from escaping.
‘Then they both turned on Finn. The old man had his finger in Finn’s mouth and was literally trying to rip his face off of him and Alex was biting Finn under the armpit.
“That’s when I grabbed a bag that had four cans of beer and a bottle of milk in it and started bashing Alex over the head with it, which pushed them away from Finn and then they started to back off.”
When the police arrived, the two men had fled, but were later arrested.
Initially both claimed to be acting in self-defence, but each was sentenced to 18 months in prison, suspended for 18 months after admitting to a fight at Chester Crown Court. His pleas of not guilty for assault were accepted.
Craig Jnr was further ordered to pay a total of £3,750 in compensation to the three victims, while his father must pay £750 in damages.
Both were subject to an indefinite restraining order that prohibits them from contacting Ms Dougherty and the teens.
Luana said that she had enjoyed some happy times with Alex Craig, but that he became uncontrollable after bouts of heavy drinking and that she was glad to have found a much more stable relationship with her new partner, roofer Howard Kynaston.
In court this week, Craig Jr’s lawyer, Gareth Roberts, said, in mitigation: ‘He comes before court duly embarrassed and embarrassed by his part in this unfortunate affair.
You know you acted in a totally improper way. He wishes he could turn back the clock and act in a different way. He is usually an extremely productive and usually law-abiding man.
“The relationship with Luana Dougherty is now completely over.”
For Craig Snr, John Wyn Williams, said: “He had quite a difficult childhood being moved to North Wales as an evacuee and abandoned by his mother.”
“He has health problems and is not in the same financial situation as his son, he has limited resources.”
Sentencing the couple, Mr Registrar Mark Ainsworth said: “Frankly, the events of that day, whatever the costumes, are shameful.”
The relationship between the two has already ended, the court heard
‘I find it remarkable that at no point during this incident, which lasted for some time, did any of you take a step back to think ‘What the hell am I doing?’
‘At various times, objects were thrown, including billiard balls. He made it absolutely clear, had there been a conviction after trial, he would have been seeking immediate imprisonment.
“While it is tempting to say that he should go to prison, there is a realistic prospect of rehabilitation, so I must step back and suspend the sentence.”
“It’s quite rare to see father and son on the bench and it’s a very upsetting thing to see too, especially in these circumstances.”