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'Abusive star the love of my life'
The ex-girlfriend of comedian and TV presenter Justin Lee Collins was on the verge of tears as she said she had put up with the abusive relationship because he was the love of her life.
Anna Larke, 38, told a jury at St Albans Crown Court that she had not shown her doctor her bruises because she did not want to get Collins into trouble.
"I didn't want to do it to Justin. He was the love of my life," she said.
Collins, from Kew, south west London, is accused of harassing and assaulting Miss Larke during their nine-month relationship last year.
Speaking from behind a screen at the court, the recovering alcoholic described being terrified about Collins returning from a trip to Las Vegas because she had failed to go to one of two AA meetings which she had told him she would attend. She told the court: "I remember his ringing me and shouting abuse down the phone to me. I was petrified about him coming back. Absolutely petrified."
Under cross-examination by Collins's barrister Sonia Woodley QC, Miss Larke admitted Collins had given her the password for his email account after she accused him of flirting with women.
"You were suspicious he might be seeing other people?" Ms Woodley asked Miss Larke. The former video games PR admitted she was concerned that he flirted with women in emails. "You were getting a bit jealous about that?" Ms Woodley continued. Miss Larke admitted: " A bit. There was a slight issue there."
She also admitted bombarding the comic with text messages after the break-up. She admitted sending both loving and nasty texts to Collins and checking up on him on websites and newspapers to see who he was with following the split.
In one text to him she said: "Of course not. I can't imagine anyone but you. I want you and I miss you. I'm driving my family crazy." A few days later, in another text she said: "Ignore all that utter insane shit. I asked my dad to take me to the emergency doctor because I think I'm on the verge of a breakdown."
She told the court she called Collins a "Z-list celebrity" and told him he was "going nowhere" in texts because she wanted to hurt him. A concerned Collins called her family's home where she was staying and spoke to her father, the court heard. The case continues.