A TEENAGER'S birthday celebrations were ruined when she and a friend were knocked out by a thug on a violent rampage.

Javier Morales, 32, attacked Vicky Bircham and two of her friends while they were out in Middlesbrough town centre for her 18th birthday.

Morales was jailed for nine months yesterday when he admitted two counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and one of common assault.

Teesside Crown Court heard how Miss Bircham was out with friends Kelly Coleman and Liam Dawson on May 7 and left The Bongo nightclub in the town at about 2am.

Morales first mumbled something to Mr Dawson, and then kicked him after Mr Dawson asked what he said.

Miss Bircham tried to stand between the two and showed Morales her 18th birthday badge, pleading with him not to spoil her day.

But Morales grabbed her by the shoulders, pushed her away and kicked her in the stomach, before kicking and punching Miss Coleman unconscious and then punching Miss Bircham until she was knocked out.

Morales, of Brough Close, Thornaby, Teesside, has four previous convictions for violence.

Robin Turton, mitigating, said: "This was an unpleasant incident and one which the defendant wishes to goodness had never happened.

"He is at a loss to understand why it did.

"He was so drunk he cannot recollect what happened with any degree of certainty."

The Recorder of Middlesbrough, Judge Peter Fox, told Morales: "This was entirely unprovoked. There is no question but that you must go to prison.

"It must have been a shocking, a terrifying, and a very painful experience."