A sports therapist who bottled a man in the face during a 30th birthday party as he tried to break up a fight has been jailed.
Stacey Dempsey attended the party of a neighbour on Jubilee Street in Oswaldtwistle and ‘started being offensive to people and calling them names’, a court heard.
The mum-of-one then got into a fight involving up to five women and when Michael Roberts, who was attending the party with his partner, tried to intervene the defendant pulled his hand towards her mouth and ‘bit his finger hard’.
Prosecutor Stephen Parker said a ‘lot of blood’ was pouring from his finger and after the incident people started to leave the party and call taxis.
The court heard how a few hours later Mr Roberts, 28, went outside onto Jubilee Street and ‘wholly unprovoked’ was hit in the face with a bottle by Dempsey.
Mr Parker said the victim ‘bent over in pain’ and when he put his hands to his face it was ‘covered in blood’. He also lost consciousness for about 30 seconds.
When the police arrived at around 3am on August 20 last year they found Dempsey at home in bed crying.
She told officers: “I only bit his finger. I haven’t done anything wrong.”
The court heard Mr Roberts suffered a ‘massive lump on his forehead’ and ‘really nasty cuts’ to his cheek and nose.
In a victim impact statement the road worker said he had lost one-third of his wages as he was unable to work night shifts and has been left with a scar on the bridge of his nose and left cheek.
Mr Parker said the victim is now concerned that ‘people think he’s a thug’.
Dempsey, 27, of Exchange Street, Accrington, pleaded guilty to ABH and assault by beating and was jailed for 10 months.
Steven Levine, defending, said Dempsey could lose her holistic sports therapy business following her imprisonment.
He told the court that the defendant was taking medication at the time of the incident and it was the ‘combination with alcohol that led her to behave in the way she did’.
Mr Levine said: “To say she has learnt a salutary lesson from this experience is an understatement.
“She is remorseful. She strongly regrets her actions and apologises profusely.
“She doesn’t drink anymore.”
Judge Beverley Lunt said Stacey Dempsey’s attack on Michael Roberts was ‘wholly unprovoked and wholly unjustified’.
Sentencing, she said: “It’s bad enough that you got into a drunken fight with a group of other women but when Mr Roberts intervened to stop it all happening you quite deliberately bit him on the finger. It was a hard bite. It broke the skin and later on caused an infection.
“That would shock most people into realising that they’ve had too much to drink and perhaps staying indoors, but not you.
“Some time later Mr Roberts came out and you deliberately hit him on the front of the head with a bottle.
“You have caused him serious and long-lasting injuries. He is certainly not going to be able to forget this incident and will show the effects of it for years.
“I’ve seen references from friends and family and they speak well of you. But they didn’t see you that night behaving in such a violent way.
“Many people drink too much on top of medication, but they don’t all turn violent and they don’t all hurt other people. You did. This was not a one-off. It was two separate incidents and two separate times.”