Thug jailed for attacks on ex
VIOLENT Nicholas Hickman has been locked up for a series of attacks on his former girlfriend.
The 37-year-old was in a relationship with Bonny Price when he grabbed her by the throat, pulled her hair out and hit her in the face with a door.
Magistrates at North Staffordshire Justice Centre heard the assaults took place over a three-month period at Miss Price's home in Cheadle, where she lived with her two young children.
Now Hickman, a former heroin addict, has been locked up for six months after being found guilty of five counts of assault.
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Prosecutor Andrew Bodger told magistrates that the attacks started when the couple began to experience relationship difficulties.
He said: "On the first occasion he put his hands around her neck and squeezed.
"The following week they had an argument, and he again squeezed her around the neck, hit her head against the wall and forced her down the stairs."
The attacks continued the following month, Mr Bodger said, with two similar incidents, and a few weeks later Miss Price decided to end the relationship.
Hickman packed up his belongings and left the house, but returned later that night.
"The injured party heard a noise. She went into the kitchen and saw the defendant standing there, Mr Bodger said.
"She asked him to leave and he went to the door, but would not leave.
"She pushed the door but was not able to lock it. The defendant pushed the door open and it hit her in the face.
"He reached in and grabbed her by the hair.
"Paul Hollinshead, a friend of Miss Price, then came into the kitchen and said he was going to call the police. The defendant ran off."
Hickman, who has been living at Lime Tree Crescent, in Redditch, had denied committing the five assaults, which happened between September and November 2011. He failed to appear in court for his trial in February last year, and was convicted in his absence.
A warrant was issued for his arrest, but he was not brought to court until December.
Alan Dawes, mitigating, said his client was a former heroin addict who was now on a methadone programme, and had not been in trouble since 2005.
He said: "Fortunately there were no nasty injuries in this case.
"There is no suggestion of the use of a weapon, or repeated blows being struck."
Magistrates sentenced Hickman to a total of 24 weeks in prison.
They decided not to impose a requested restraining order because there had been no contact between Hickman and Miss Price since the offences.