Student police officer convicted after pushing pregnant partner down flight of stairs

Ex-student police officer Thomas Gair, 23, from Middlesbrough, was found guilty at Durham Crown Court of controlling and coercive behaviour, assault and stalking.

Thomas Gair, left, pictured outside Durham Crown Court. (Reach)
Thomas Gair, left, pictured outside Durham Crown Court. (Reach)

A former student police officer who pushed his pregnant partner down a flight of stairs has been found guilty of controlling and coercive behaviour.

Thomas Gair, 23, from Middlesbrough, was also convicted of three counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and stalking. He was acquitted of two further assaults.

During his trial, Durham Crown Court heard that Gair pushed his ex-partner down the stairs while she was pregnant at their home in Norton, Teesside, in May 2020.

On other occasions during their three-year relationship, he also knocked her to the ground with a car door and bit her, the court heard.

Gair controlled what she was allowed to eat and when she could go to the gym, made cruel comments about her weight and limited her contact with her friends.

He has been remanded in custody and will be sentenced on 24 April. Cleveland Police confirmed he has been discharged from the force.

Gair's former partner told the court last week she was "knocked unconscious" after he pushed her down the stairs when she was pregnant.

She also said he "pushed her out of a car before reversing, letting the door smack her".

She said: "Every day with him was a battle and it completely changed me as a person."

The victim's mother told the court she saw injuries on her daughter's body on a number of occasions.

After an incident at the pair's former house, her mother visited and found her daughter crying.

Prosecutor Ian West read out a text message conversation between Gair and the mother.

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Durham Crown Court in Durham, County Durham.   (Photo by Owen Humphreys/PA Images via Getty Images)
Thomas Gair was convicted at Durham Crown Court. (PA Images via Getty Images)

In the exchange, Gair wrote: "I owe you an apology for the way I behaved and acted. I'm really embarrassed and ashamed of the way I've gone on.

"I can completely understand your anger and concerns. If I was in that position I'd be livid to say the least.

"I went for this job because I wanted to be a role model and make the world a better place."

Acting Superintendent John Bonner, acting head of Cleveland Police's directorate of standards and ethics, said: “Gair was a student officer with Cleveland Police studying at the force training school when reports were made that he was perpetrating domestic abuse against his partner.

“Those reports came from the victim and other student officers, who were able to identify the signs of domestic abuse from the learning they received.

“The reporting made by those officers is a testament of their morals in doing the right thing. It enabled the directorate of standards and ethics to take immediate and robust action in arresting Mr Gair within 24 hours of the report.

"Thomas Gair was discharged on 17 March 2023, having never been in contact with the public during his short time in the police service."

Christopher Atkinson, head of the Crown Court Unit for the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) North East, said: “Thomas Gair was possessive and manipulative towards his ex-partner throughout the course of their relationship.

"He exerted significant control over her behaviour, which extended to telling her who she could see and when she could go out.

"Their relationship was also punctuated by a catalogue of violent assaults including Gair pushing his then-pregnant partner downstairs, knocking her unconscious.

"I would like to recognise the swift action taken by Cleveland Police in this case. I would also commend the bravery of the victim in this case, who has faced her abuser in court to give a compelling and credible account of his actions. I sincerely hope that she finds a measure of comfort in the conviction of Thomas Gair today.”