A GUEST at a christening party bit a chunk out of another man’s nose after accusing him of flirting with his girlfriend.
Graham Hall, 35, was attending the christening of his sister's children at The Kingfisher pub in Spennymoor, County Durham, on September 8 last year, when the violent altercation took place.
Durham Crown Court heard today (Monday, April 28) how Hall, of Wordsworth Road, Darlington, had spat out the 4cm-by-2cm chunk of flesh, before shouting “there’s your f*****g nose” to his bleeding victim.
Stephen Duffield, prosecuting, said the victim required surgery, including a skin graft, and was likely to need further operations.
In a statement read out in court, the victim, who was not part of the christening party, said: “I suffered from depression before the assault but since then it has got worse and I have been having anxiety attacks and have been prescribed more medication.
“I am frightened to leave my house and keep making excuses not to go outside. I have even started to panic about being in the house alone and for a while I slept with a kitchen knife under my pillow.”
Mr Duffield said Hall lashed out at the man because he believed he was flirting with his girlfriend.
Hall, who admits to losing his temper when drunk, pleaded guilty to assault causing grievous bodily harm with intent, having previously denied a charge of unlawful wounding.
The Crown Prosecution Service initially did not accept his plea, but changed its mind when the victim altered his statement to say he was unsure how the pair ended up scuffling on the floor.
Shaun Dryden, mitigating, highlighted the barmaid’s account which described both men had thrown punches before the nose biting incident.
“Mr Hall is vulnerable, socially isolated man who spends most of the time in his sister’s property,” said Mr Dryden.
“This is not a man who regularly goes out or drinks anything at all. He has suffered from mental health problems for a number of years.”
Judge Christopher Prince, who jailed Hall for two years, told him: “You chose to get drunk, you lost your temper and you decided to bite off [the victim’s] nose during a scuffle on the floor.
"I am not willing to suspend this sentence. You must be punished.”