A BLIND man who butted his girlfriend then grabbed her by the throat on her bed in a drink-fuelled row over an ashtray was spared jail.

Karl Parkinson, 37, had already been sentenced for assaulting a former partner and served a 20-week jail sentence for a previous domestic incident, a court heard.

But Newport judge Rhys Rowlands gave him a suspended sentence after hearing his disability would make it difficult for him to serve time behind bars.

Parkinson left his girlfriend, Natasha Miles, with an “unpleasant” eye injury after grabbing her at her home in Cwmbran on October 30 last year, Newport Crown Court heard.

The pair had both drunk alcohol and rowed over an ashtray that he feared he might knock over, the court heard.

Parkinson’s head crashed into Ms Miles’ and she ended up biting her tongue during the incident, the court heard.

His barrister, Harry Baker, argued the butt had been inadvertent as Parkinson only has peripheral vision in one eye.

Ms Miles then swore at him but he went on to pin her on her bed and grabbed her by the throat.

She told police she thought she was going to die as she could not breathe properly, prosecutor John Lloyd said.

She managed to dial 999 and get out of the room and police arrested him, Mr Lloyd added.

Parkinson, of Monmouth House, Cwmbran, pleaded guilty to one count of common assault.

The court heard that Parkinson was sentenced for two charges of common assault in 2004 after repeatedly punching his former partner. The court also heard that he received a 20-month custodial sentence for a domestic incident in 2007.

Judge Rowlands gave Parkinson a 36-week jail term, suspended for two years.

Judge Rowlands also imposed a restraining order barring him from contacting Ms Miles and going to her address for the next five years. He also ordered him to take part in crime reduction initiative sessions and ordered him to pay an £80 surcharge.