Former Miss Australia ‘punched, abused’ then-husband

Ethan James |

Former Miss Australia Kathryn Hay has pleaded not guilty to domestic violence-related charges.
Former Miss Australia Kathryn Hay has pleaded not guilty to domestic violence-related charges.

A one-time Miss Australia and former politician verbally abused her husband, punched him, threatened him with violence weekly and hit him with a shoe, a court has been told.

Kathryn Isobel Hay, 48, has pleaded not guilty to the emotional abuse or intimidation of then-partner Troy Shane Richardson from January 2014 to November 2022.

Mr Richardson said Hay also pressured him to apply for the lifting of a family violence order against her and made him send an email to her siblings saying “everything was his fault”. 

Kathryn Hay (centre, file image)
Hay (centre) was crowned Miss Australia in 1999 and was a Tasmanian state MP from 2002-2006. (Dave Hunt/AAP PHOTOS)

Hay was crowned Miss Tasmania and Miss Australia in 1999 and served in Tasmania’s parliament as a Labor member from 2002-06. 

She appeared in Launceston Magistrates Court on Tuesday for the opening of a hearing expected to run for several days. 

Mr Richardson said the pair met in 2009 at a dog show and were married in 2012. 

He described their relationship as “all rosy” but said things deteriorated around 2013 after the birth of their second child. 

On a holiday in Melbourne in 2014, he said Hay hit him in the face with a shoe several times while he was driving because he “just didn’t do something right”. 

She threw a bowl of cereal at him on the return trip to Tasmania and called him useless, pathetic and a c***, he said.

Mr Richardson told the court there were threats of violence at least weekly and Hay would give him lists of things that needed to be done. 

“If it wasn’t done properly I’d get abuse. If it was done, she’d give me another list,” he said. 

“She would often make a point of having an argument in public just to make me feel low.”

Former Miss Australia and ex-state Labor MP Kathryn Isobel Hay
Hay was taken into custody accused of slapping Mr Richardson for driving around a corner too fast. (Ethan James/AAP PHOTOS)

One of several messages allegedly showed Hay telling Mr Richardson to “fix his f*** up”.

Mr Richardson said he was left with a black eye after Hay punched him in 2020.

In December 2021, Hay was taken into police custody for allegedly slapping Mr Richardson for driving around a corner too fast leading to a family violence order against her. 

Mr Richardson said Hay later demanded he have the order revoked and spent 79 minutes on the phone with him telling him what to write. 

Hay allegedly accused Mr Richardson of having an affair with a woman he had never met.

She also accused him of hacking her phone and computer, and bugging her car. Mr Richardson said he was spoken to by police but never charged.

He said the accusations left him “broken and depressed”.

Under cross-examination from Hay’s lawyer Dermot Connors, Mr Richardson agreed the end of the marriage was acrimonious. 

He denied having control of the couple’s finances and access to Hay’s Facebook account and sending messages to himself.

Mr Richardson also denied allegations payments he received to care for Hay were obtained against her will by falsely claiming she had major depression.

He disagreed with the claim Hay only called him a c*** in 2021 and early 2022 when their relationship was “very bad”.

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