Naked fantasist ‘chanted Voldemort spells’ as he tried to suffocate girlfriend

A fantasist who stripped naked and tried to suffocate his partner while pretending to be Harry Potter villain Voldermort has been jailed for 11-and-a-half years.

Edward Rudd, 37, denied the attempted murder of then-girlfriend Cara Bryant by using a plastic bag and a pillow to stop her breathing.

Rudd dismissed the incident as just a “prank" that had got out of hand.

Bristol Crown Court heard Rudd crept into the victim's room in the early hours of December 11 last year – while in the nude.

He then shone his phone torch in her face and played a mash-up video he had made of an argument they had the day before.

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Ms Bryant responded with what Rudd described as "snivelling" – which he said spurred him on.

He then affected a high-pitched voice inspired by Lord Voldemort, the demonic villain in the Harry Potter series.

Rudd went downstairs in their shared house in Melksham, Wilts., before returning with a plastic bag and chanting nonsense fake-Latin spells.

But the court heard that, when Ms Bryant didn't react, Rudd leapt on the bed and pulled the carrier bag over her head – a “prank” he had apparently pulled on her on her once before.

Rudd claimed in the witness box he heard Ms Bryant saying she couldn't breathe, but thought she was faking.

He told jurors: "After a while I took the bag off from the top. I did feel some resistance, which I now believe to be Cara passing out or ripping it."

Rudd added: "I had the bag over her head very loosely. It wasn't tight or anything like that. It wasn't tight around her neck."

He then held a pillow over her head – although he claims he had arched the pillow so it would not suffocate her.

In a recording played to the court, an increasingly desperate Ms Bryant could be heard pleading with her boyfriend.

She captured the events on video as she had managed to hit record on her mobile phone’s camera.

There then came a point where Rudd said he felt he had gone too far, describing it as feeling like a hot-and-cold rush.

He could be heard repeating the phrase "I love you" and calling the victim "babe".

Rudd described his actions as "styling out” the situation – attempting to pass off his actions as acceptable.

He added: "I had a little bit of a moment. What I wanted to do was say: 'Sorry, are you okay?'.

"But, from previous experience, you apologise to Cara and you'll never hear the end of it."

Ms Bryant then called police, who were at the couple’s home within minutes and arrested Rudd.

Interviewed by police, he told a story about waking up to find the door open then answered no comment to detectives' questions.

He said: "I believed if I had admitted to putting a bag over Cara's head that I would be charged for what I had been arrested for.

"I knew I didn't attempt to kill her. I just couldn't see any other way out."

But prosecutor Rob Welling accused the defendant of trying to kill his partner after she asked him to leave.

He said: "This was an occasion where she was rejecting you. She'd had enough of you.

"That's the truth. You can see that on the 10th she'd had her guts full of you.

"You were angry that another of your relationships were failing and you were going to make her pay, weren't you?

"This was about you getting your own back on her."

The prosecutor added that Rudd knew his partner was ill. She had previously been in a coma and had other health issues.

He said: "She lasted longer than you imagined and you were worried about the neighbours, weren't you?

"You then played a charade, didn't you, to try and make out it was either you under some kind of influence and you were trying to charm your way out of it by calling her baby.

"Cara knew you very well by December 11, she told the police: 'He's trying to kill me'. And she was right."

The court was also told Rudd told a police nurse he had been in the Royal Marines and served with the Special Boat Service – despite not having served with the elite special forces unit or been a Commando.

Rudd, of no fixed address, was jailed for 11 years and six months after he was found guilty of attempted murder.

He was further sentenced to nine months, for possession of a pepper spray he has already admitted, to run concurrently.

Ms Bryant died, reportedly of unrelated causes, a few weeks after Rudd’s arrest.

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