THE boyfriend of a Brit who vanished off a yacht was previously arrested for allegedly beating up his ex-wife, The Sun can reveal.
Ryan Bane, 44, claims he woke up at 2am on March 8 to find his girlfriend Sarm Heslop, 41, had mysteriously disappeared from his catamaran on the island of St John in the US Virgin Islands.
Sarm, from Southampton, is a former flight attendant who met the American on Tinder eight months ago.
A police report, seen by The Sun, shows that Bane was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence in 2011 when married to Corie Stevenson, 43.
The document shows he was nicked at their home and taken to county jail, after allegedly throwing Corie to the floor and smashing her head against it, chipping her tooth.
Court documents show he served 21 days in jail.
His ex-lover Corie exclusively told The Sun about her troubled marriage to boat captain.
She said: “Ryan’s personality changed once we got married.
“It was a beautiful wedding in 2008 but it was like he flipped a switch.
“He suddenly became a different person and that started on our honeymoon in Spain. We went to Madrid, Valencia, all over. But he was a total Jekyll and Hyde character.
“And that continued when we got home.
“He would have a good week, and then all of a sudden he changed. He was a totally different person publicly. None of his friends ever saw him like that. He was good at covering up.
“There was never a day when I didn’t fear him. I slept with a shotgun the whole time I went through my divorce.”
Corie reported Bane to the police after a row on returning from a wedding to their home in Lake Orion near Detroit in 2011.
The police report, seen by The Sun, claims that Bane – who had been drinking – became “abusive” to her on the journey home.
After arriving home at 5.30am, “Ryan grabbed (Corie) and dragged her out of the truck”, she told an officer writing the police report.
The report adds: “Ryan grabbed her in the dining room, threw her to the ground and smashed her head into the floor, chipping one of her teeth.
“She says that she fought Ryan off of her.
“She states that Ryan has been becoming increasingly verbally abusive toward her, and that he has been physically abusive one time previously.
“She states that this incident happened about 6 months ago, that the incident went unreported and that it caused her to miss multiple days of work with marks to her face.
“When Ryan was brought downstairs, (Corie) became noticeably frightened and ran from the area into the laundry room.”
The police report says Bane was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence and taken to Oakland County Jail, in Michigan.
Of the incident, Corie told The Sun: “I was absolutely terrified while it was happening.
“I saw the devil behind his eyes and it scared me. It was a totally different person who was there. It was petrifying.
“I was terrified already when he pulled me out of the truck. But during the assault my fear reached a whole other level.”
Corie was left with a chipped front right tooth, a bloody and scratched earlobe and red scratches on her right shoulder and the right side of her neck, the police report states.
She added: “My face was all red and my tooth was broken. A couple of days later my face was black and blue and I had finger marks around my neck.”
Bane pleaded guilty and served 21 days in jail – before serving another 31 days for a probation violation in 2013, court documents show.
Corie, who now lives in Melbourne, Florida, said she eventually allowed him back in the house after a separation – but the pair divorced in 2014.
After Sarm went missing, Bane told detectives he raised the alarm after seeing that the experienced transatlantic sailor had vanished at 2am.
He said he was woken by his anchor alarm, which detects if the boat is straying from its mooring and could find no trace of her.
Police said he called them at 2.30am and told him to ring the US Coast Guard. But that call was not put through until 11.46am.
A massive search involving divers and a helicopter failed to find any trace of Sarm.
The couple met last year on Tinder in Grenada. Sarm went to Malta to find work and the pair conducted a long-distance relationship.
But she returned to the Caribbean a few weeks ago to work as a cook on his boat, which was moored in just 11ft of water about 50ft from the shoreline when she vanished.
Bane is now not believed to be staying on his yacht, the Sea Siren, and police will not confirm where he is staying.
If you are affected by any of the issues raised in this article, please call the Samaritans for free on 116123.
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