A survivor of shocking domestic abuse was tortured, locked in a dog cage and threatened to be buried alive during a horrific three-year ordeal.
Angelique, 22, unwillingly fell into a slave-master relationship with Thomas Jennings when she was a vulnerable 16-year-old in Ballarat in regional Victoria.
The pair met at a party before Jennings moved her into his home and forced her to sign a ‘contract’ which said Angelique was now his ‘slave’.
Things quickly spiralled out of control for the teenager, who can’t read or write and lives with an intellectual disability.
Thomas Jennings (pictured) moved Angelique into his home and forced her to sign a ‘contract’ which said Angelique was now his ‘slave’
For the next three years, Angelique was held captive, choked, burned and shocked with electricity before she was dramatically rescued by the perpetrator’s friend.
Angelique told A Current Affair Jennings treated her even worse than his pet dog.
‘He would stand above [me] in the shower and pour chilli on me or chilli powder and ruin my shower and make me get out of the shower and stay in that state,’ Angelique said.
‘He locked me in the dog cage and left me there for as long as he wanted until he said I could come out.
‘He put the dog collar around my neck and the dog lead and made me crawl on all fours.’
A survivor of domestic abuse has revealed how she was tortured and locked in a dog cage while living in an abusive relationship
Angelique was told to ‘obey or get hurt’ and that she would be buried in bushland if she didn’t comply.
‘He wanted to put me in the boot and take me out to the bush and bury me alive,’ she said.
The abuse lasted three torturous years for Anglelique, until at 19 she was finally able to escape with the help of Chris Bourne, who was once a friend of Jennings.
Jennings openly tortured Angelique in front of his mates, including Mr Bourne.
‘[Jennings] would deny her basic human rights, water, the ability to have any communication with family or friends, he was just a monster,’ Mr Bourne said.
‘She was so small, she was malnourished, she was not clothed half the time properly and she would just be hiding in a corner waiting to be beaten.
‘He attempted to have his dog attack her, he grabbed it by the collar, told it to kill her and just went into full attack mode and he had every intent to release the dog on her.’
Mr Bourne went to the police, who he said told him they would need a statement from Anglelique before they took action.
Mr Bourne bought a $15 panic button online and snuck it to her, urging her to call for help if she felt in danger – and she soon did.
At her signal Chris took Angelique to the police station after convincing Jennings she needed to make a statement about an unrelated matter.
The young woman was choked, burned, shocked with electricity and threatened to be buried alive before she was rescued and taken into police custody (stock image)
When she got to the station she finally revealed the dark story of what had been going on behind the closed doors of the Ballarat terrace.
Jennings was arrested and charged with a string of offences.
He was jailed for two years and eight months after pleading guilty to 11 offences at a Ballarat court.
He was sentenced for false imprisonment, recklessly causing injury and threatening to inflict injury.
Jennings was recently released from jail.
Angelique shared her story as a warning to women across Australia to watch out for her abuser.
‘I wouldn’t want it to happen to anyone else, so people need to be warned to stay away,’ she said.
‘I know it is always going to be playing on my mind somewhere, in my mind or in my heart, but obviously now is the time for me to be happy, so I should be able to deserve happiness.’