A first-time Angus domestic offender has avoided going behind bars after being slammed by a sheriff for a “very nasty” attack on his partner.
John Gunn pulled the woman by her hair before dragging her to the ground where he landed several blows to her face.
The 22-year-old was placed on a community payback order at Forfar Sheriff Court, but was warned he had been lucky not to be sent to jail.
Gunn, of Priory Crescent, Arbroath admitted assaulting his partner at their home on July 28 this year after he returned home under the influence from a party.
Depute fiscal Jill Drummond told the court he and his girlfriend had been together for six years but on the night of the offence the accused went out alone.
“He returned about midnight, angry and drunk and began to accuse the complainer of cheating on him and texting other men,” said the fiscal.
The argument moved from the bedroom to the living room and as the woman tried to leave he grabbed her hair, pulled her to the floor and punched her to the face three times.
“She managed to sit up, was crying and begging for him to stop assaulting her,” added Ms Drummond.
The victim then fled into the street but was followed by Gunn who continued to shout abuse at her.
“A couple of neighbours came out and the accused ran off up the street,” added the fiscal.
Police were contacted by the woman’s mother and found the victim crying hysterically, with blood running down her face.
Concern over her injuries led to the victim being taken to Ninewells where she was found to have suffered bruising and a bump to her head.
Gunn told police: “What would you be doing if you found out your girlfriend was texting another boy, you wouldn’t be happy.”
Defence solicitor Billy Rennie said: “It is a thoroughly unpleasant narrative.
“It seems to be out of character – he has no previous convictions and there is no record of domestic incidents.
“There is talk of a reconciliation, but not immediately. He will have to prove himself over a period of time,” added the lawyer.
Sheriff Reekie told Gunn: “This is a very nasty domestic offence. You have got to find a way of dealing with your issues without resorting to very serious violence.
“Even as a first offence it seems to me that the custody threshold is met.”
He imposed a community payback order as a direct alternative to prison, including 12 months’ supervision and 110 hours unpaid work which Gunn must complete within six months.