Bainsford man jailed for assaulting former partner

Mark McArthur was jailed today at Glasgow High Court
Mark McArthur was jailed today at Glasgow High Court

A violent thug who throttled his former partner as she held a toddler in her arms has been jailed for 32 months.

Mark McArthur then fled to a music festival.

The 23-year-old launched the attack while Amie Dowell was holding a two-year-old boy – who fell from her grasp.

The dad-of-one choked Amie (22) until she lost consciousness and then punched her as she lay on the ground.

Just seconds earlier McArthur told her: “I’ll slash you,” and then said: “I could strangle you, it would only take ten seconds.”

Glasgow High Court heard that he told Amie to put the boy down before grabbing her throat in a choke hold.

He then fled to Creamfields, a music festival in Cheshire and posted on Facebook: “Hand myself in after Creamfields ... no wasting that. Innocent until prove guilty”.

McArthur, of Carronside Street, Bainsford, pleaded guilty to assaulting Ms Dowell by threatening her with violence and death, compressing her neck and punching her to the danger of her life at Glynwed Court, Falkirk, on August 23 last year

He was originally charged with attempted murder, but the Crown accepted his guilty plea to the lesser charge of assault to danger of life.

Passing sentence today, judge John Morris QC told McArthur: “Fortunately for you she didn’t die.”

He added: “I can only hope that his relatively short period in custody will cause you to reflect on your life and hopefully you can come out being a proper father to your child.”

Advocate depute Bill McVicar, prosecuting, said: “She believed that the accused was about to attack her and attempted to move out of the way still holding the toddler.

“The accused grabbed her and pulled her towards him. There was a struggle during which she fell forward and became aware of the accused grabbing her around the neck using one of his arms and compressing her throat in a choke hold. “

The court was told that Amie felt dizzy and was gasping for breath and panicking. The child fell from her grasp.

Mr McVicar added: “She recalls that she was digging her nails into the accused’s arm when it was round her neck.

“And the forensic evidence lends support to that as DNA matching the accused was found on nail scrapings taken from her left hand.”

During the assault McArthur was shouting: “I will kill you, I will kill you, you will die.”

Amie told police that she lost consciousness for a time and woke up to find McArthur on top of her punching her repeatedly to the face and shouting.

The incident ended with McArthur leaving the house.

His victim suffered bruising to both eyes, grazing to her right temple area, her nose and chin and swelling and bruising to her throat. She was complaining of pain in her ribs.

When she was examined at Forth Valley Royal Hospital she was found to have petechial haemorrhages around both eyes and her right eardrum was ruptured.

Mr McVicar added: “Applying pressure to the neck is well known to be a potentially lethal action and the accused accepts by his plea that his actions in compressing the neck of the complainer as described is conduct which is capable of causing danger to life.”

The court was told that the couple had been in a six-year relationship which ended in October 2014.

Defence counsel Derick Nelson told the court McArther believes Amie is a “stabilizing influence” and that he had a problem with alcohol and anger.

He said: “Unfortunately on this occasion the flare up was in the domestic context.”

Mr Nelson added McArthur has shown remorse for his actions and has prepared himself for a jail sentence.