A WOMAN suffered serious injuries and was left dripping with blood after being attacked with rocks in a ‘sustained and unprovoked’ assault, a court heard.

Victoria Palmer launched the brutal and violent attack on the victim on Redcar beach in the summer after drinking excessively.

Graphic images of the 36-year-old victim showed her head completely covered in blood as she attempted to escape the onslaught which resulted in her have part of her left ear sewn back on and her head and face being covered in lacerations.

Witnesses thought the attack had killed the woman.

Teesside Crown Court heard how it was later discovered that the victim suffered three potentially life-threatening blood clots to the brain as result of the attack.

Harry Hadfield, prosecuting, told the court that Palmer ran towards her victim and threw several punches before the woman fell to the floor and the defendant straddled her and rained down blows to her head and face.

The 41-year-old then started smashing rocks and stones into her victim’s face and skull leaving a heavily bloodstained scene in her wake.

Mr Hadfield said an unidentified man also became embroiled in the violence and hit the victim over the head three times with a metal bar.

Even after that, Mr Hadfield said the assault continued as Palmer smashed her victim’s face with such force it was making her head bounce of the steps leading off the beach near The Regent cinema.

CCTV footage shown to the judge, Recorder Tahir Khan QC, showed Palmer sitting on the beach with Palmer prowling around her shouting at her before the woman and her friend manage to escape the beach and make it onto the Promenade with the defendant still chasing after her victim.

Police then arrived on the scene at around 8.40pm on Saturday, July 20 to find Palmer on the seafront with her hands covered in the blood of her victim.

In a victim impact statement, the woman said her life had been changed permanently by the brutal assault and she is likely to remain on medication for the remainder of her life.

In mitigation, John Nixon, said Palmer pleaded guilty to wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm at an earlier hearing and that there was a “history” between the two.

He said at one-point Palmer was “looking after a stray dog” that subsequently got cancer, “devastating” her. He added how his client had alerted medical professionals to her decline mental health in April and May before carrying out the attack.

Sentencing Palmer, who previously lived in Redcar, to seven and a half years, the judge said she had carried out a ‘brutal and sustained attack’ on the victim.

He said: “You must have realised early on in the assault that she was badly hurt and bleeding profusely, yet you carried on using these rocks to pummel her around her head.

“That was merciless.”

He added: “The victim was putting up absolutely no resistance at all; she was not moving; witnesses thought she was dead because she wasn’t moving.”

Palmer, of Little Horton Lane, Bradford, was also issued with an indefinite restraining order.