AN attacker who left a man needing surgery after headbutting him at a nightclub has been spared jail.
Oliver Harris’s victim required eight stitches to his nose as a result of the attack.
He also needed treatment to remove a broken tooth and exposed nerve following the late-night assault at Pure in Guildhall Walk, Portsmouth.
Harris, 21, who has no previous convictions, admitted assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
He was sentenced to nine months in jail suspended for a year and ordered to pay £3,000 compensation to his victim.
Portsmouth Crown Court heard Harris was with a group of friends on the nightclub’s dance floor when there was some shouting and pushing with another group.
The court heard the victim said he went in between the two group in a bid to calm the situation where Harris grabbed him round the throat.
The victim said Harris hit him and he thought he had been punched.
But witness evidence later revealed he had been headbutted.
As well as having an exposed nerve and a tooth broken in the attack in the early hours of March 8 removed, an artificial tooth was screwed into the victim’s jaw.
His treatment cost almost £4,000 and he has been left with a scar on his face.
Addressing Harris, of Woodside, Chelmsford, Essex, Judge Richard Price, sentencing, said; ‘You were too quick to reach the conclusion that you or any of your friends were being attacked or were about to be attacked.
‘It’s the sort of thing that happens to young men like you, sometimes blamed on drink and you were clearly under the influence of drink when you committed this offence.’
Judge Price added: ‘Drink is no excuse. Drink makes it worse.
‘That said, I’m satisfied that you did, albeit too quickly, albeit in drink, you did snap to the conclusion that something was going to happen to you or your friends.
‘It wasn’t. That was absolutely clear from the evidence given by your unfortunate victim and you overreacted.
‘You used far more force, far more force than was necessary had the circumstances been as you needed them to be.’