A MAN was jailed for five years for carrying out a sudden unprovoked attack on another customer in a town centre bar.

Carl Ian Pearson turned and threw what was described as, “a fearsome punch” at a defenceless man behind, who was sitting having a drink on the covered bar of a pool table at The Freemason’s Arms, in Consett.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the victim was causing no provocation, talking to a couple he knew after a night out drinking with friends in the town.

The middle-aged man fell to the pub floor with blood flowing from his mouth and nose.

Although he was helped to his feet by other drinkers, Pearson surged forward again and threw a further flurry of punches.

Paul Cleasby, prosecuting, said onlookers dragged Pearson away from the victim and he was seen leaving the premises shortly afterwards, at 12.30am on Saturday July 7, 2018.

He seemed to be heading for a nearby pub, but as police vehicles approached, he returned to the Front Street premises and was arrested.

Mr Cleasby said the victim was briefly knocked unconscious and after coming around was attended by customers, before being taken to the hospital suffering facial disfigurement and fractures to the jaw.

He later had a metal plate inserted as part of the lengthy healing process.

Witnesses said he posed no threat to Pearson, who launched the sudden attack after breaking off from talking to a woman at one end of the pool table.

Pearson made no comment to police and denied causing grievous bodily harm with intent, at a plea hearing in February.

But he admitted responsibility for the attack, and, at the start of his trial, at Durham Crown Court, in October, admitted the lesser offence of causing grievous bodily harm, claiming there was no intent in the assault, as, “the red mist” suddenly came over him.

But the jury found him guilty of causing gbh with intent.

Judge Christopher Prince remanded the 38-year-old defendant, of Richardson Way, Consett, in custody after the trial.

Following preparation of a probation report, Judge Prince imposed the five-year sentence and ordered Pearson to pay a £170 statutory court surcharge.