I acted in self-defence, says Brent

CONFLICTING versions of how a Port Elizabeth woman landed in hospital, allegedly at the hands of her boyfriend Brent Cunningham, emerged in court yesterday. While one woman told the St Albans Court she had witnessed an aggressive Cunningham punch Shireen Ballan in the face during the early hours of December 27, his attorney claimed he had acted in self-defence.

Ballan, 36, sustained a cut above her eye and bruising on her cheek when she collapsed outside her Morningside home, reportedly from the impact of the punch.

The first state witness to be called, Chantel Burger, told the court how Ballan was knocked unconscious by Cunningham, 22, and had to be rushed to hospital. Burger claims she was manhandled by Cunningham when she tried to intervene.

Cunningham has pleaded not guilty to the assault of Burger and two counts of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm for the alleged assault on Ballan and Burger's fiance, Albert Erasmus.

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