Party guest kneed woman three times in the face at Hartlepool gathering

Teesside Crown Court
Teesside Crown Court

A 28-year-old man who kneed a woman in the face three times has been jailed for 18 months.

Stephen Bourne turned to violence at a house party in Cornwall Street, Hartlepool, after drinking for several hours, Teesside Crown Court heard.

“Bourne’s behaviour leading up to the assault was generally unpleasant,” said David Crook, prosecuting. “Other guests describe having to tell him to calm down.

“He slapped his female victim in the face for no apparent reason.

“When asked why, he apologised and offered to shake her hand.”

The court heard Bourne left the party for a few hours.

“He returned in an even drunker state,” said Mr Crook. “The victim was sitting on a sofa.

“She describes Bourne grabbing her hair and kneeing her in the face three times.

“Another male at the party pulled Bourne off her.”

In a statement read to the court, the victim said she had ‘lost feeling’ in her front teeth and had needed to make several visits to the dentist.

Bourne admitted assault occasioning actual bodily harm on July 12.

He has previous convictions for assault, robbery, theft and harassment.

Robert Mochrie, defending, said in mitigation: “Mr Bourne accepts custody is inevitable.

“He completed the supervision elements of his previous sentence, and did everything the probation service asked of him.

“His upbringing was troubled, and he suffers with mental health problems.”

Judge Tony Briggs jailed Bourne, of Marton Road, Middlesbrough, for 18 months.

The judge told him: “In certain respects you have some potential.

“But you have trouble controlling your temper, and others have to suffer for it.

“This was a nasty and unpleasant incident, you were drunk, and you had been warned to behave yourself at least three times.”