A YOUNG man was locked up yesterday after he bit the ear of a man who had attacked him 36 hours earlier.

Jamie Boyle launched his revenge attack on John Roberts when he saw Mr Roberts involved in another fight in August.

Yesterday Boyle, 20, of Aire Street, Middlesbrough, appeared before Teesside Crown Court and admitted wounding Mr Roberts with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

Judge Peter Fox QC sentenced Boyle to 18 months in a young offenders' institution and told him: "It is a horrible thing to take a large part of another person's ear in your mouth and bite away to the extent you did."

Christine Colley, prosecuting, said Mr Roberts had been out with friends when another group of men started fighting with them. Boyle was not part of that other group, but joined in.

He and Mr Roberts started scuffling and fell. When Mr Roberts was pinned down, Boyle bit his ear.

Miss Colley said: "He felt it bitten again and it would appear Boyle was biting it while hanging on to it and writhing with the ear and trying to bite it."

Mr Roberts managed to get up and ran off. He went to Middlesbrough General Hospital, where he needed stitches in his ear.

Philip Crayton, for Boyle, said 36 hours before the incident he had been walking home when he was assaulted after being set upon by Mr Roberts and two other men.

Boyle was a hardworking young man, who had been in the Army until he suffered bronchitis and asthma and was discharged.

He bitterly regretted not walking on when he passed the scene after having had too much to drink