A north-east man who throttled a woman with his scarf until she started turning blue was yesterday jailed for four-and-a-half years.
Mark Fraser, 43, was found guilty of the attack following a trial at Aberdeen High Court last month.
Jurors heard he assaulted the woman at her home in Peterhead, suddenly and without warning.
She ended up on the floor of her living room, unable to breathe and thinking she was going to die.
Fraser later wrote to his victim from prison and told her he had just wanted to give her “a scare”.
He appeared at the High Court in Edinburgh for sentencing yesterday.
Judge Lord Uist told him: “You must understand that the crime which you committed was a very grave one, involving ligature strangulation in her own home to the danger of her life.
“You are fortunate that the consequences were not fatal and that you are not now facing a sentence on a murder charge.”
Fraser was originally accused of raping and attempting to murder the woman in the attack on November 28 last year.
He had always admitted attacking her, but denied he tried to kill her. He also denied all sexual elements to the charge he faced.
A jury of seven men and eight women took under two hours to decide he had been telling the truth.
Fraser, described as a prisoner at Barlinnie, said he had visited the woman at her home when a row broke out.
“The argument started to get more intense and I just snapped,” he said.
“I had enough. She turned round, called me names.
“When I went to put it (the scarf) round her neck, she threw herself forward and I went with her and that’s when I tightened it up. I was saying something like: Will you grow up?”
Giving evidence, the woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said: “I got to the point I was no longer able to breathe. I was going blue, I was looking at Mark and he was looking at me.
“I could not speak. I did not have any breath left in me to speak.”
She added that, as she lay on the floor, Fraser asked her: “Are you dead yet?”
The high court heard Fraser had a criminal record which included assault dating back to 1997, but he had never previously been jailed.
Defence counsel Shelagh McCall said: “He is under no illusions that he is likely to receive a significant custodial sentence for this offence.”