Former Mossman Butchering Company butcher Justin Edwards.
Former Mossman Butchering Company butcher Justin Edwards.

‘Dead, dead, dead’: Butcher’s threats to ex-partner revealed

A FORMER butcher who held a knife to the throat of his ex-girlfriend in the locked coldroom of his Mossman store during three weeks of "frightening and very degrading" stalking has been released on parole.

Justin William Frederick Edwards, 38, exchanged about 3200 text messages with his ex-partner early last year following the breakdown of their relationship - many including abuse and threats.

The Cairns District Court heard yesterday he also threw a wine bottle and a bowl at her car, slashed her tyres and ran her off the road before denting the side of her car with his knee.

Edwards pleaded guilty to stalking, four counts of wilful damage, two counts of common assault, stealing, breaching bail and breaching a domestic violence order.

Crown prosecutor Gelma Meoli told the court the terrifying incident in the butcher shop occurred after he slashed her tyres, then offered to pay for the repair if she went into his store. She said he took her into the storeroom, grabbed her by the hair then held her by the throat against a wall.

"He grabbed a knife from his belt … held it to her throat and said if she screamed he was going to slice her neck," she said.

The court heard Edwards has been in custody for just over a year.

Judge Dean Morzone described Edwards's behaviour as "persistent and controlling".

"There is never any excuse for domestic violence of this or any kind," he said.

He sentenced Edwards to two years and nine months jail with immediate parole.