Hanley man Paul Fitzpatrick jailed for drunken assault on partner
ATTACKER Paul Fitzpatrick has been jailed after he beat up his partner and then told police she was assaulted by three Asian men.
The 42-year-old went out drinking with his partner Rachel Godfrey on September 2 last year, Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court heard.
Prosecutor David Bennett said the couple went to Newcastle and Hanley and both consumed a 'great deal' of alcohol.
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They began to argue at about 1.30am on September 3 as they made their way home and Fitzpatrick threw some chips at Miss Godfrey.
"On arrival at the defendant's flat he punched and kicked the complainant," said Mr Bennett.
"He then stopped, began crying and apologised to her.
"He told her he would not drink again. The defendant rang for an ambulance."
Miss Godfrey was taken to hospital as she had bruising to both eyes and her left breast, elbow, thigh and ribs.
She suffered pain and soreness to the left side of her body and a cut to her head had to be glued shut.
"The complainant heard Fitzpatrick telling someone she had been beaten up by unknown people," said Mr Bennett.
"She was asked by a doctor if the defendant had caused the injuries and at that point she said he had not."
The court heard that at 4.07am Fitzpatrick called the police and falsely reported that the complainant had been beaten up by Asian males in Hanley Park.
But on September 6, Miss Godfrey confirmed to an officer it was the defendant who assaulted her.
Fitzpatrick, of Matthews Walk, Hanley, pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm and perverting the course of justice.
The court was told his previous convictions include battery against a former partner in 2006.
Robert Smith, mitigating, said Fitzpatrick still struggles to recall the details of the incident but accepts he caused the woman's injuries.
He said the defendant was unable to explain why he attacked Miss Godfrey.
"A combination of alcohol use and untreated anger management issues seem to be the root cause," said Mr Smith.
He added that Fitzpatrick has not drunk alcohol since the incident as he acknowledges it can make him violent.
Jailing Fitzpatrick for 20 months, Judge Granville Styler said: "This was a serious offence of domestic violence.
"It was a sustained attack on your partner when you were drunk.
"And you have a previous conviction for domestic violence with a former partner."
The judge added: "The serious aggravating feature is you tried to blame this assault on three Asians and that was a complete lie. And people who do that face immediate prison because if everybody tried to divert blame by blaming other people the system of justice would break down."