A 73-YEAR-OLD man repeatedly stabbed his wife after learning of her affair with a postman, a court heard.

Joseph O’Riordan told Amanda O’Riordan “look at what you made me do” before stabbing her as she stood in their bedroom, jurors were told.

The former councillor denies attempting to murder the 47-year-old at their home in Guardian Court, Polegate, on October 22.

Yesterday, jurors at the first day of his trial heard that Mr O’Riordan took a knife from the kitchen to inflict the wounds before phoning an ambulance and telling the operator, “It was me”.

Prosecuting at Brighton Crown Court, Dale Sullivan said: “The catalyst for the attack, the crown says, is undoubtedly the extra-marital affair that Amanda O’Riordan had instigated in the preceding months.”

He told jurors Mrs O’Riordan had disclosed the short-lived affair to her husband of ten years three weeks before the attack.

Her lover, Nicholas Gunn, who used to be the couple’s postman but had since moved to Portslade, had also later admitted the affair, the court heard.

Mr Sullivan said that on October 8, Mr O’Riordan installed a GPS tracking device in his wife’s car so he would know where she was going, and kept logs of the mileage during that time.

Police had also found letters on Mr O’Riordan’s computer addressed to family members, which spoke about his wife’s affair and about taking his own life, jurors heard.

Mr Sullivan added: “The defendant had also secured a copy of the electoral register which lists all of the recent electors from the Highland Road area of Portslade in East Sussex. This was the road Nick Gunn lived in at the time.”

On the night of the attack the couple had been shopping in the Bexhill and Hastings area with her mother before arguing in the car, the court heard.

Mr Sullivan said: “The defendant told Amanda O’Riordan at that stage that a private investigator he hired to follow her had reported information to him which indicated that she was still lying to him.”

He continued: “During the rest of the course of that journey to Polegate, he said to her that she had made a fool out of him and that he could not trust [her].”

Once they were home, jurors heard, Mr O’Riordan was angered that she had not taken off her coat, and then went into the kitchen and got a knife.

Mr Sullivan said: “He walked off out of the bedroom and having armed himself with a knife and saying, ‘look at what you have made me do, this is your fault,’ – immediately thereafter the stabbing began .

“The first blow administered with the blade was to the chest.”

Mrs O’Riordan was taken to hospital with eight stab wounds and needed surgery.

In her video interview played to police, she said her husband, with whom she had been in a relationship for twenty years, had never harmed her before.

She said: “We had our ups and downs like any relationships or any marriage, but I never ever would have put money on it that he would ever ever hurt me because I know that he loves me.”

Mr O’Riordan denies attempted murder. The trial continues.

‘I felt like I was going to die. That this was it for me’

MR AND Mrs Joe and Amanda O’Riordan had travelled into Bexhill and Hastings to take her mother shopping before he stabbed her, a court heard.

It had been about three weeks since Mrs O’Riordan had revealed to her husband her short-lived affair, jurors were told, amid an increasingly fractured relationship. While putting away the shopping at her mother’s house, Mrs O’Riordan said she noticed her husband getting a phone call which appeared to signal a “shift in his mood.”

Later that evening, he revealed what the phone call was about.

“He said that a private investigator he hired to follow her had reported information to him which indicated that she was still lying to him,” prosecutor Dale Sullivan told the court.

In the car back towards Polegate, he confronted her, Mrs O’Riordan would later tell police in a video interview played to the court: “He said again, ‘you have made me a fool, you have lied to me, and how can I believe anything that you say if you lie to me?’”

She tried to get out of the car, she said, but he would not let her. She told police: “We pulled up at the traffic lights and they were red and I went to open the door and he said, ‘Where are you going?’

“And I said, 'Well, I am not going to be in the car with you because you are getting more and more worked up and I am not going to stay in the car'.

“And he grabbed me until I could not get out of the car and he pulled me down so I could not move.

“Then he drove. I said to him, ‘ok, I won't get out of the car, but just let me go’.”

Arriving back at their flat in Guardian Court, Polegate, Mrs O’Riordan said she went into the bedroom, as she always did, to drop her handbag. But she kept her coat on, prosecutors said, a move that appeared to annoy her husband.

Mr Sullivan said: “The defendant took exception it seems to the fact that she had not taken her jacket off or her coat off.

“The reason for that was that she had not decided yet whether she was going to stay – there still being an argument going on or at least an air of ill-feeling.

“[...] The defendant said, ‘you are not going out,’ and he grabbed her saying, ‘take your coat off’.

He then went into the kitchen, got a knife and stabbed her repeatedly, the court heard. She could barely remember the first stab, she said, but then: “I felt like I was going to die, I felt like this was it for me.”

Calm 999 call As she lay on the bed, bleeding heavily, Mr O’Riordan phoned an ambulance, in what prosecutors described as a “calm fashion.”

In a 999 call played to the court, the operator asks, “Where is the culprit now?” He responds: “It was me.”

When Mrs O’Riordan woke in hospital, she was worried about her husband, she later told police in her video interview.

“I wanted to know where he was. Nobody would tell me at first. But I kept asking, because I wanted to make sure he was alright.

“He had to take medicine, he had some things wrong with him and I wanted to make sure that he was being looked after properly, because I have always looked after him.”

Over the previous seven or eight months, Mrs O’Riordan had started to feel “smothered” in their relationship, she told police she was “exhausted” with their busy life on top of her full-time job.

She recalled: “I just wanted some time for myself and I just wanted to be on my own just to recharge if you like, because, you know, I was exhausted.

“We do a lot in the local community, which is a lovely place where we live. I love it and the people are very nice.

“And we belong to lots of little associations and things like that, but we were always busy.

“I work full time but every evening practically we would be doing something and at the weekend I would be cooking or catering or things like that. And it got to the time where I was exhausted and did not want to do it anymore.

“But I did not like to say no because, you know, because Joe wanted to, we were part of the community and [have] done lots of charity work and fundraising – it was always to raise money for something.”

She said she had discussed her feelings about their relationship with her husband.

“He had said he would take his own life were she not in it, and she could not have that “on her conscience”.

She had told him she would stay with him but wanted to do more things independently. By the time of the affair, she said she “was sort of under the impression that we were finished anyway, so I did not think that it was so wrong, which it was”.

She had stayed in touch with Nicholas Gunn after he moved to Portslade, she told police.

Of their relationship she said: “It was just a couple of months, it did not go on forever. But he just made me feel more me.”

‘A woman has been stabbed, hurry’

The 999 call Mr O’Riordan made after allegedly trying to murder his wife was played to the court.

The 73-year-old is heard telling the operator, “a woman has been stabbed,” adding “please hurry, please hurry”.

The operator asks whether Mrs O’Riordan is conscious before asking, “Where is the culprit now?” “It was me,” Mr O’Riordan is heard to respond.

The operator asks how badly Mrs O’Riordan is bleeding, before adding: “Ok, what you need to do is find a towel and wrap it up and place that on the wound for me.”

She tells him to open the door for the paramedics and leave it open, and takes him through steps he needs to take to help his wife.

Later, Mr O’Riordan is heard to add: “I want to look after her, it is me that has done this to her.”

He was arrested at the flat and taken to custody.

Prosecuting, Dale Sullivan said Mr O’Riordan did not make any comment during interview, but gave a prepared statement that said: “I am in shock at having been arrested for such an allegation as serious as this. I am concerned about Amanda’s well-being and I have no comment to make at this stage.”