A drunken man gouged the eyes of two innocent women he thought had been involved in an attack on his girlfriend, who had her ear bitten off in a pub brawl, a court heard.
Father-of-four Stephen O’Connor became embroiled after being told about the attack on his partner during a row over the choice of music at a disco at the Horse and Groom in Wibsey.
Prosecutor Andrew Kershaw told Bradford Crown Court yesterday there had been an argument between the defendant’s girlfriend, Stacey Wilkinson, and Sophia Blackburn about the music being played by the deejay. The women fought and Blackburn bit off part of Miss Wilkinson’s left ear, disfiguring her for life.
Blackburn, of Torre Road, Horton Bank Top, Bradford, the mother of a three-year-old son, was last month jailed for four years after she was convicted of wounding with intent.
Mr Kershaw told Judge Robert Bartfield yesterday that 44-year-old O’Connor responded to the attack on his girlfriend by fighting with other people in the bar, and in particular attacking mother and daughter Susan and Sharon Allsop, who were in their 60s and 40s respectively.
“His assault on them involved gouging their eyes,” said Mr Kershaw.
The prosecutor said Miss Wilkinson suffered a very serious injury in a serious assault, but the Allsops had no part to play in that.
The incident took place in the early hours of May 25 last year.
O’Connor, of Beacon Place, Wibsey, was charged with violent disorder and wounding with intent, but pleaded guilty to affray on the last day of his trial. His solicitor advocate, Ray Singh, said his client was a hardworking individual and committed parent. He said he had not gone looking for a fight, but thought the Allsops were attacking, or had attacked, his girlfriend, and had got the wrong people.
“It was a horrible, stupid, drunken mistake,” said Mr Singh.
He said jailing O’Connor would harm his girlfriend, who was a victim.
Judge Bartfield told O’Connor his partner was subjected to a vicious attack and suffered a terrible injury, but he made a drunken mistake.
“You attacked a 60-year-old woman, who was half your size, and gouged at her eye,” the judge said.
“You then turned your attention to her daughter who you knocked to the ground and gouged her eyes as well. You are a coward.”
Judge Bartfield added: “One thing, and one thing only, saves you from imprisonment.
“It is your partner, who has had to suffer enough without you being locked up and her being deprived of your presence in the house. I have read her letter to me, which is very eloquent.”
O’Connor was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment suspended for two years and ordered to carry out 100 hours unpaid community work and pay a £100 victims surcharge.