A Hull woman is warning people of the dangers of internet dating after she was violently attacked by a man her best friend met online. Katherine Long, 26, suffered a broken eye socket, a deep cut to her eyebrow, and has been left scarred for life after she was attacked.
Miss Long, of Willerby, has spoken of the horrific attack, which happened at her friend’s home in July 2014. She is telling her story now after claims he has been spotted looking for love on internet dating sites once more.
She said: “I didn’t know this man until the day he attacked me, but he has affected my life ever since. The attack caused massive devastation to me and my family, so much so that I feel I need to make people aware of the dangers of internet dating. People are not who they say they are, it is so dangerous.”
Miss Long’s friend had been dating the man, who was of a muscular build and spent hours a week at the gym, for three months when she introduced him to the 26-year-old. The trio enjoyed some drinks together but when Miss Long got up to get her bag from the kitchen to leave, she says he punched her in the face.
“I went round to my friend’s house for a couple of drinks with them both,” Miss Long said. “They had quite a lot to drink, I couldn’t as I was working the next day. Because of that I decided to leave and, as I went to get my bag, he punched me hard in the face.”
Miss Long was knocked unconscious and rushed to Hull Royal Infirmary. She had an emergency CT scan and needed stitches to the wound near her eye. She says there was “no reason” for him to punch her.
“I had to take three weeks off work because of what he did,” Miss Long said. “My little girl, who was four at the time, was petrified of what happened to her mum.”
Miss Long’s attacker pleaded guilty to wounding and inflicting grievous bodily harm when he appeared at Hull Crown Court in October 2014. He received a six-month prison sentence, suspended for 18 months. He was also subjected to a 12-month community order and given a two-year restraining order against Miss Long and her friend.
“I was disgusted with the sentence, he should have gone to prison,” said Miss Long. “With the sentence in mind, I feel it is my responsibility to raise awareness to prevent this happening again. I want people to be aware that everything is not always as it seems.”
Miss Long says despite her ordeal, she will not let her attacker win. She said: “I am genuinely OK now. I’ve had two years to come to terms with what happened.
“I am not the type of person to let anything get the better of me. I have a little girl to look after, I will never let him ruin my life.”