A man who repeatedly punched his partner while she shouted at bystanders to “call the police” has been jailed for 15 months.
John Townsley admitted assaulting his girlfriend in the communal area of an Aberdeen homeless hostel before later kicking and spitting on police officers who came to her aid.
The 21-year-old, who the court was told led a “transient” lifestyle with his fellow-traveller girlfriend, had been staying at the council’s homeless accommodation on West North Street.
He flew off the handle in front of housing officers and punched her repeatedly during an argument.
Shouts of ‘call the police’
Fiscal depute Lynne MacVicar said his victim was heard shouting “call the police” during the assault, which took place at 4.20pm on December 10.
“Housing officers at the hostel were on duty when they heard a disturbance within the common area,” she told Aberdeen Sheriff Court.
“They saw an argument taking place between the pair and the complainer shouting ‘call the police’. Witnesses saw the accused repeatedly punching her on the body.”
Officers were on the scene within a matter of minutes and found Townsley outside the hostel, where he then became violent with them.
Two male police officers had to restrain him to the ground during the altercation.
Spat at police officer
He kicked one and spat at the other before being placed in the back of a police van and taken to Kittybrewster Police Station.
Townsley’s defence agent Edel McGinty said he had suffered a “tragic upbringing” with both his parents dying when he was young.
“He has a limited record and nothing indicating a violent background,” she added.
She added that the pair are now engaged and expecting a first child together having moved away from their home town of Campbelltown to “start afresh”.
Sentenced to time in prison
Townsley admitted three charges of assault and the court heard he was “realistic” about his sentence being a custodial one.
Sheriff Morag McLaughlin told him the spitting offence was one taken particularly seriously sentencing-wise during the coronavirus pandemic but said she would also take into account his young age and his lack of analogous convictions of assault.
She handed Townsley, of Northfield Grove, Edinburgh, a 15-month prison sentence.
For all the latest court cases in Aberdeen, as well as the latest crime and breaking incidents, join our new Facebook group HERE.