Man jailed after bottle attack on rival which almost sliced his nose off

The Northern Echo: LOCKED UP: William Burnside LOCKED UP: William Burnside

A MAN who almost had his nose sliced off when he was attacked with a broken bottle has told how it has devastated his life.

William Burnside was yesterday jailed for six years for the vicious assault outside Yates's Wine Lodge in Darlington last summer.

The 24-year-old was told by a judge at Teesside Crown Court: "A broken bottle can cause disfigurement - it can cause death."

Victim Christopher Turner suffered three wounds down to the muscle in his arm as he tried to block further blows towards his face.

Police said afterwards that had any of the thrusts made their way past his defences, Mr Turner could have been caught in the neck.

Detective Constable Mick Trodden said: "They have both been lucky in a way. It could have been a murder case we were dealing with."

The court heard how bad feeling between the two men had "simmered" for years before they clashed at the town centre pub.

The pair argued before Burnside was asked to leave, but he returned with a bottle of brown ale which he smashed and used as a weapon.

In an impact statement, 26-year-old Mr Turner - who is scarred for life - said he still suffers from numbness in his face and left arm.

He said he had to turn down a labouring job because he cannot lift heavy objects, and told how he is also unable to go to the gym.

Prosecutor Harry Hadfield said Mr Turner underwent a four-hour operation and plastic surgery, and has had four further hospital visits.

Vic Laffey, mitigating, said: "The incident occurred after a build-up of bad feeling which had simmered for a number of years.

"Mr Burnside deeply regrets what happened on this evening, and he deeply regrets the injuries he has caused this young man.

"He is clearly remorseful and up until this point in time, he had led a relatively blame-free life. He will take his punishment."

Burnside, of Elton Parade, Darlington, admitted wounding with intent on August 22 last year at an earlier court hearing.

He told police after handing himself in that he had downed at least seven bottles of Newcastle Brown Ale and a pint that day.

Judge Simon Bourne-Arton said: "Goodness knows what went through your mind on this occasion when you carried out this very serious attack.

"When he came out, you broke that bottle and you had a very fearsome and dangerous weapon at your disposal.

"You broke it for the one and only reason to attack him and cause him more serious injury.

"He effects of the alcohol you had wore off. The effects of what you did to him will never wear off.

"He was left with scars and will remain with scars to his face and arm. His life has changed as a result of what you did."

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