Ex-partner denies biting and beating Instagram influencer girlfriend

A man on trial for biting and beating his model ex-partner claims it was “impossible” that he hit her as there were no marks on his hands, a court has heard.

Instagram influencer Chloe Othen, 33, says she was punched in the head 30 times, strangled and dragged along the floor by her hair by Ricky Lawrence, 32.

Lawrence is also accused of biting Ms Othen, taking her phone and stopping her from leaving his flat in Hans Crescent, Knightsbridge, after a text message row in the early hours of October 15 2022.

Giving evidence on Tuesday, Lawrence told jurors he had not kidnapped Ms Othen as she claimed at the time, and instead said to Bora Guccuk: “There’s no kidnap, this is my address. You come and pick her up, she won’t leave.”

The defendant also said there was “no way” he bit Ms Othen and allegations that he punched her were “impossible” as he had no marks on his hands.

He said he did not use any physical violence against her, but instead repeatedly asking her to leave the property.

Ricky Lawrence court case
Chloe Othen says she was punched and bitten by Lawrence (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

Lawrence, who part-runs tailoring and property development companies, had to leave his previous job with an alcohol wholesaler due to negative press from the alleged incident, the Nightingale Crown Court in Holborn, central London heard.

Lawrence told jurors his relationship with Ms Othen began properly around the end of February 2022 and had “started to disintegrate” by the end of April, before ending “very abruptly”.

Defence lawyer Tony Wyatt asked what Ms Othen had said to Lawrence about her previous boyfriend, Mr Guccuk, to which Lawrence replied: “She told me that she’d been in an abusive relationship, multiple times.”

Lawrence alleged that when he picked up Ms Othen from outside Mr Guccuk’s home around April 2022, she had “a mark along the side of her face”.

Lawrence said he called police to his apartment on May 8 of that year as Ms Othen “wouldn’t leave”.

Asked by Mr Wyatt whether there was any truth that Lawrence bit or punched Ms Othen during that incident, Lawrence said: “Absolutely not.”

Lawrence said he offered Ms Othen to stay with him in his flat in June 2022 after she revealed she was pregnant and wanted to keep it, before she changed her mind after several days and had an abortion.

The defendant said he and Ms Othen bumped into each other frequently and slept together on numerous occasions between May and October 15 2022, despite her being involved in a “money relationship” with Mr Guccuk.

He told jurors that Ms Othen regularly made allegations of stalking against him which he denied in court, adding: “Anywhere I was, she seemed to be.”

Lawrence said he and Ms Othen exchanged messages between around midday and 2.30pm on October 14 before arranging to meet at 5.30pm that evening.

Ricky Lawrence court case
Ricky Lawrence says he asked Chloe Othen to leave his home (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

Ms Othen cancelled and Lawrence next heard from her at about midnight, he said, after which they then spoke every half an hour until the early hours of October 15.

The jury was then shown WhatsApp messages exchanged between Lawrence and Ms Othen on October 15 from 04.17am onwards.

These included messages from Lawrence which said “You f***** up tonight. Watch what I do now you silly c***”, and “I’ll do anything in my power to f*** up the rest of your life. Screenshot that.”

Lawrence told the court the messages were “terrible” and he was “not proud of that”.

Asked by Mr Wyatt why he wrote them, the defendant said: “When you’ve had the last couple of months I’d had … there comes a point when your language becomes more colourful than it might usually be.”

Referencing the “Screenshot that” part of one message, Lawrence said: “She used to delete messages so I couldn’t forward them to somebody else.”

Lawrence said he was going to tell Mr Gaccuk that he and Ms Othen were having an affair.

He told the court he woke up at about 5.45am and answered the door to Ms Othen straight afterwards.

Asked about Ms Othen’s condition at that time, Lawrence said she was “clearly very, very drunk, or on something else” and was “slurring”.

Lawrence said he answered Ms Othen’s phone, which she had put on the coffee table, after he saw it was Mr Guccuk ringing “to tell him she was at my house”.

He claimed Ms Othen then “panicked and started saying, ‘He’s kidnapped me’” whilst he was still on the phone, and that he put the phone back on the table once the short call ended.

Lawrence denied all allegations that he threatened to kill or stab either Ms Othen or Mr Guccuk in the neck.

The defendant said that after having “the same, repetitive conversation” with Ms Othen, he “scooped her up and held her almost like a baby” and took her to front door, again asking her to leave.

Ms Othen re-entered the flat but did eventually leave of her own accord, Lawrence said, and he did not hear anything else until around 12.30pm later that day when police arrived at the property.

Lawrence denies a charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and the trial continues.