A History of Violence
A History of Violence
Raoul became a panel beater, a nightclub bouncer and then a father. In 2003 he is said to have threatened council staff because he blamed them for his daughter falling out of a window in their home. He denied that he’d lost control or threatened violence:
“In my line of work you lose your job if you’re abusive or lash out, so you learn how to control your temper.”
Raoul began to believe that social services were trying to destroy his family. He began recording conversations with them believing they’d provide evidence of the conspiracy against him. This blaming of others became almost a Raoul characteristic.
In 2004, he started dating a young, slim blonde woman called Samantha Stobbart.
“Sam used to love to go out...Her mum used to take her to the nightclubs when she was 15, on a school night.”
Agnes Hornsby, Samantha’s grandmother
Queuing to get in to a nightclub one night, Samantha fell for the 6ft 3in Raoul. Family and friends liked him at first despite the 15 year age gap. But her half sister Kelly thought him domineering and noticed that if crossed, he had a temper.
“Raoul Moat’s...not that unusual among men who are controlling or domineering in their relationships. Some of these characteristics for Raoul Moat have included suspiciousness, jealousy and control. These are often found in relationships where people in themselves are actually quite insecure but they’re hoping to compensate that through controlling others.”
Richard Marshall, Clinical psychologist
So began six ‘tempestuous’ years. His jealousy and paranoia meant Raoul would only allow Samantha to go out with him by her side. His vanity meant she must wear make-up. When Samantha resisted, they’d fight. Then they’d make up. This cycle repeated itself many, many times.
One time Raoul picked Samantha up like a rag doll and chucked her against the wall. The impact split open her head. He then jumped on her stomach. When his rage subsided, he apologised. Raoul would point out to others that he never punched Samantha. He was open about the fact that he slapped, pushed and roughed her up. But in his mind, as long as he didn’t punch her, his behaviour was acceptable.
“I’d call it his roid rage.”
Kelly Stobbart, Samantha’s half sister
Samantha often sought refuge at her grandmother’s.
In 2005 he was caught carrying an eight inch serrated steel knuckle-duster and a 5ft long Samurai sword.
In 2006 Raoul was prescribed anti-depressants for his depression. He also saw a psychologist.
In March 2009 he was pulled over by traffic policeman David Rathband. Raoul ranted about everything from social services to not being able to see his children. Rathband let Raoul go but feared their paths would cross again.
Rauol developed a hatred of the police. In his paranoia, he installed CCTV at his home. But the cameras weren’t to deter thieves. Like his tape recordings of social service conversations, he hoped they’d capture evidence of police harassment. Raoul’s sense of victimisation was fuelled by the fact that he’d been arrested 12 times over a ten-year period for low-level assault type incidents but convicted only once.
Three years into their relationship, Samantha became pregnant with Raoul. They had a daughter. But Raoul’s quest for perfection had sunk any possibility of becoming a family. When she posted on Facebook that she was going out with a friend, Raoul came round with a gun and threatened her and her family. Eventually Samantha couldn’t take it anymore. Raoul realised he was losing control.
Then he assaulted a child. In April 2010, he was sent to jail for the assault. Samantha took the opportunity to finalise their separation. Her Facebook status changed to ‘single’. Raoul was also told the tree surgery business he’d set up is in trouble and he may lose his home. Raoul’s cellmates noticed a change came over him.
And then Samantha found another man, her ‘soul mate’, Christopher Brown. A Southerner, Christopher had moved to Newcastle in the hope of starting a career as a karate instructor. But Samantha told Raoul that his younger rival is a police officer. She perhaps hoped that this might stop Raoul attacking either of them on his release. It has the opposite effect.
Raoul contacted his old friend and tree surgery business partner, 26-year-old, Karl Ness. He asked Ness to contact an armourer and get ‘a car with 6 wheels’.
“A car with 6 wheels...was a gun with 6 cartridges.”
Superintendent Jim Napier
On Thursday 1 July 2010 Moat finished his 18 week sentence in HMP Durham. His Facebook status carried a warning:
“Just got out of jail. I’ve lost everything, my business, my property...I’m not 21 and I can’t rebuild my life. Watch and see what happens.”
That afternoon Raoul went shopping at a B&Q store in Newcastle dressed in a bright orange T-shirt. He sported a Mohican similar to the one worn by the psychopath in the film ‘Taxi Driver’. Raoul was buying camping equipment. In just 36 hours, he would be relying on it for his survival.
The next day Durham prison warned the police that Moat might intend to ‘cause serious harm to his partner.’
At Moat’s home his CCTV captured Ness arriving. Ness carried a blue bag. In it it’s believed there was a gun. Inside, Raoul adapts his gun cartridges. He loads them with lead fishing weights to increase their destructive impact. He intends to shoot to kill.
The two phoned around and searched the Internet trying to track down Christopher Brown. They wanted to know who he was, where he worked and what he drove.
CHRISTOPHER’S LAST FRIDAY NIGHT
On Friday evening, Christopher and Samantha walked to a pub to celebrate her mum’s birthday. Afterwards, they went on to a friend’s house in Birtley to carry on the party. Ness drove Raoul to the house.
Raoul went up to the house and sat outside the window listening to Christopher and Samantha and their friends. He texted Ness his angry account of the party. He is now so paranoid he believed they were talking about him and were laughing at him. They were talking about him but they were worried. Christopher wanted to know if there was a baseball bat he could take in case Raoul suddenly attacked.
There wasn’t, so when Christopher left the only thing that he was holding was the hand of his new girlfriend, Samantha.
Raoul held his sawn off shotgun.
“I knew Raoul was a nutter...I just didn’t think he would actually kill someone.”
Kelly Stobbart, Samantha’s half sister