Man who attacked partner with pool cue jailed after leaving victim with fractured eye socket

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Newcastle Crown Court heard the victim woke up in a puddle of blood in one incident, and was punched numerous times to the face on another.

A brute who left his long-term girlfriend with a fractured eye socket after he struck her with a pool cue has been jailed.

Craig Jopling, 38, had been in a relationship with the woman for over a decade but launched a number of devastating attacks on her last October.

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Newcastle Crown Court heard the victim woke up in a puddle of blood in one incident, and was punched numerous times to the face on another.

The final attack took place on the 25th of October when Jopling struck her to the head and eye with the pool cue.

The court heard that the woman sought out hospital treatment days after each incident but she did not want to support the prosecution.

Mr Recorder Latimer told Jopling: "(The complainant) I understand has been your partner for 11 years or more. 

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"In the days before the 9th of October 2023 you punched her five to seven times in the face and the fact is you used sufficient force to injure the inside of her mouth.

"She went to A&E on the 9th of October and she told multiple staff you had been drunk.

"In the days leading up to the 16th of October, you hit (the complainant) with a bottle leading to a scar down her forehead. She described to her daughter how she had been in and out of consciousness and had woken up in a pool of blood.

"The most serious offence is the grievous bodily harm that occurred sometime before the 25th of October 2023.

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"You told the pre-sentence report writer that you and (the complainant) were intoxicated. You said it was likely all the offences were committed under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

"On that occasion you hit her across the forehead with a pool cue."

The court heard Jopling then hit her again to the eye as she was sat kneeling on her knees. She took herself to hospital on October 25 with swelling and bruising around the eye, left ear, and cuts to her head.

The recorder added: "In the immediate aftermath she was unable to open her eye or see out of it.

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"That injury caused lasting damage and that's a permanent reminder of the domestic violence that you used against your partner.

"She needs to take extra care in case she receives contact or has an accident in relation to her eye."

The court heard that when police were called to his address to arrest Jopling, he told the woman: "I will be battering you and I will hold my hands up to it."

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Jopling, of, Bunyan Avenue, South Shields, South Tyneside, who has 18 past convictions for 36 offences, admitted grievous bodily harm and two counts of assault by beating.

Robin Turton, defending, told the court a suspended sentence could be imposed due to the defendant's guilty plea, time spent on remand, and the need to address his issues.

However, Mr Recorder Andrew Latimer said he was satisfied only immediate prison could be justified given the assaults were committed in a domestic context within the same month.

He jailed Jopling for 32 months.