'Britain's Most Badly Behaved Dad': Mother of his 12 children says he doesn't deserve reputation
A wife of a father-of-12 dubbed 'Britain's most badly behaved dad,' has hit back at critics, claiming: "We're the victims."
Stuart Murgatroyd has a criminal record for robbing elderly people and once had to be sprayed with CS gas by police in a row over his son's football.
Yesterday he was arrested on suspicion of assault – 20 minutes before he was due to appear in court to challenge an Anti Social Behaviour Order against him.
The 41-year-old had become the fifth member of his family to get an anti social behaviour order after terrorising neighbours in two council boroughs.
But when he went to Burnley Magistrates Court to 'vehemently deny' any wrongdoing he was arrested after allegedly having a bust-up with Dawn Hughes, the 40-year-old mother of his children, before the case had even begun.
Deciding to stand by her man, in an interview before the case, Hughes said: "I think we are being targeted by the police and everybody is just lying about everything.
"They are dredging up past history.
"It is only the twins who have got ASBOs anyway and they now want Stuart to have one to set an example to the kids.
"We are not Britain's worst family, far from it - this house is immaculate. We're the victims."
However, yesterday's incident was the latest in a string of offences involving Murgatroyd's family.
Despite being just 13 years old, Murgatroyd's twin boys - Reece and Dillon - already have two-year ASBOs ordering them not to cause 'harassment, alarm or distress'.
The pair are now banned from 'maliciously throwing' things at people, vehicles or buildings and from swearing or using offensive hand gestures.
Council officials had earlier evicted the family from one of their previous homes in Padiham after 125 complaints from neighbours, who had endured three years of loud parties, fighting and drunken behaviour.
Murgatroyd has been claiming sickness benefit for depression since he was 17.
In April 1999 he was jailed for two-and-a-half years for mugging three pensioners and stealing a handbag from a woman of 78 in a cemetery.
In August 2004 he suffered head injuries when he was attacked by a neighbour armed with a 2ft-long machete amid claims a text message had been sent threatening to firebomb the home of his attacker's mother.
Then in 2007 Murgatroyd sparked a police siege after a row over a neighbour confiscating his children's football.
He was said to have lost his temper and hurled cutlery and a vacuum cleaner towards officers before being overpowered with CS gas.
Murgatroyd had previously been issued with an ASBO. After it expired last November the couple and eight of their children moved into a £150-a-week rented three-bed terrace house in Nelson hoping to make a 'fresh start'.
However, he was given an interim ASBO and warned he must not be in possession of any open container of alcohol or be drunk in a public place with the Burnley Borough and Pendle Council areas.
Murgatroyd's Anti Social Behaviour Order hearing will now be held on October 16.
More on Parentdish: Asbo for 13-year-old who terrorised his town for four years