A jealous man who picked his partner up by the throat and dragged her through her home during a drink and drug-fuelled attack has walked free from court.

Joseph Bass accused his victim of coming out the men’s toilet during a night out before reacting violently and assaulting his former partner.

Teesside Crown Court heard how the brutal attack only came to an end when a passer-by heard screams coming from inside the house, brayed on the door and shouted to tell Bass to stop.

Matthew Hopkins, prosecuting, said the 31-year-old’s victim suffered cuts and bruises after being picked up by the throat and carried upstairs before Bass ‘came to his senses’ and let her go.

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“He dropped her on the stairs and punched her several times to the back of her head,” he said.

“The victim had her keys in her hand and while she was trying to protect herself, when the defendant punched her, the keys impacted on her head causing bleeding.”

In a victim impact statement, his former partner said Bass had acted out of character and believes his behaviour was the result of his cocaine and alcohol intake on the night of August 27, last year.

She said she didn’t want a restraining order imposing as she did not fear any further assaults from her former partner.

Bass, of Blanchland Green, Darlington, pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm and non-fatal strangulation.

The defendant, who represented himself, said he had stopped drinking and taking drugs as a result of his arrest last year for strangling his ex-partner but maintained that he had not punched or kicked her.

“I’m sorry for what I have done – it wasn’t me, it just happened all of a sudden,” he said.

“I’m trying to get help during the week but because I work away, I can’t get the help at the minute.”

Judge Howard Crowson sentenced Bass to 14 months in custody suspended for two years before praising the bravery of the passer-by who had the courage to intervene.

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He said: “This behaviour came out of character meaning she had no idea how this might have finished – she feared the outcome.

“A woman walking down the street heard the screams and hammered on the door, shouting for the attack to cease. I made you come to senses and you brought it to an end.”

Bass was also ordered to attend 50 rehabilitation activity requirement days and pay £750 in compensation to his former partner.