Bainsford man who choked ex-partner while she held child awaiting sentence

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A bully who attacked his former partner as she held a toddler in her arms will spend new year in custody.

During a terrifying assault at a house in Falkirk in the summer, Mark McArthur choked Amie Dowell until she lost consciousness and collapsed to the floor.

At the High Court in Glasgow the 23-year-old had sentence deferred for background reports and remanded until January 20.

McArthur, from 59 Carronside Street, Bainsford, had originally been charged with attempted murder, but the Crown accepted his guilty plea of assault to danger of life.

The court was told his victim was holding the two-year-old when McArthur started to throttle her.

She dropped the child as she fell and was then punched as she lay on the ground.

Just seconds earlier he had told Ms Dowell (22): “I’ll slash you. I could strangle you, it would only take ten seconds.”

He also repeatedly shouted at her: “I will kill you, you will die.”

Advocate depute Bill McVicar, prosecuting, said: “She believed 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 heard Ms Dowell was gasping for breath and panicking when the child fell from her grasp.

Mr McVicar added: “She recalls that she was digging her nails into his arm when it was around her neck.”

Ms Dowell was treated at Forth Valley Royal Hospital in Larbert and found to be suffering from bruising to both eyes, grazing to her right temple, nose and chin and swelling to her throat after the attack in a house in Glynwed Court on August 23. Her right eardrum was also 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 capable of causing danger to life.”

Judge John Morris QC was told the couple had been in a six-year relationship which ended in October 2014.

He will hear defence council Derick Nelson’s plea of mitigation on January 20.