THE strangling victim of a violent thug begged a judge to lift a restraining order banning her attacker from making any contact.
Portsmouth Crown Court heard the woman was assaulted by Alfred Pearce, leaving her bruised and with red marks on her neck.
But during a sentencing hearing where Pearce was jailed for a year, his victim branded the 32-year-old as the 'loveliest, most kindest bloke' and asked a judge to lift the order, saying she loved him.
Close to tears she said: 'He needs mental health support and alcohol counselling, that's what needs to happen to him.
'When he's sober he's the loveliest, most kindest bloke in the whole world.'
Judge Roger Hetherington rejected her plea to lift the order after being told Pearce had twice breached it and assaulted her at home, saying its need was 'reinforced'.
'I'm afraid it's a fairly familiar story, without in anyway minimising it,' the judge said.
Prosecutor Jordan Franks said police had been called to Knox Road, Stamshaw, after neighbours heard a noise 'as if someone had been thrown across a room'.
The court heard body-worn video cameras worn by officers attending the May 26 incident captured the victim saying Pearce had hit her and strangled her.
He had only been released from custody earlier in May, when the restraining order was imposed on May 8.
But Mr Franks said Pearce was on the run until June 23, when police got a 999 call and heard a woman shouting: 'Get out.'
'When the police attended she put her fingers to her lips as if to say he was in the property and couldn't answer the questions,' Mr Franks said.
Sentencing, the judge said manipulative Pearce, of no fixed address, had a long criminal record, including breaching orders and for violence.
Ground worker Pearce had suffered family bereavements, has problems with alcohol and had been invited to his girlfriend's home, his lawyer Howard Barrington-Clark said.
'It's fair to say on the two occasions that they were both in drink,' he said. He added: 'He will be released and that will be the true test.'
Pearce admitted two charges of breaching a restraining order and assault by beating.
- Southern Domestic Abuse Service helpline: 0330 016 5112