Jail for ‘self-centred’ attacker who sliced ex-partner’s neck with a shattered mug
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**WARNING: Graphic images contained in story below**
A man who battered his ex-boyfriend over the head with a mug then slashed his neck, head and hand with the broken shards has been jailed for nearly five years.
Daniel Nielson, aged 27, admitted causing grievous bodily harm with intent against his ex-partner Ashley Brittin, aged 30, in February in Raunds.
Following the end of the couple’s two-year relationship, Nielson had been allowed to stay in Mr Brittin’s home while he found somewhere else to live, but on the evening of February 1 this year an argument broke out.
When Mr Brittin took Nielson’s tea away, Nielson followed him to the sink, took back the empty mug and hit him over the head with it. The blow shattered the mug, leaving the handle attached to a jagged piece of sharp pottery.
Nielson continued to strike out with the shard at least 10 times, cutting deeply into Mr Brittin’s head, neck and hand as he tried to fend off the blows, leaving him bleeding heavily.
Nielson then pushed his victim down the stairs, and when Mr Brittin eventually got away and was able to dial 999, he was unable to hear the emergency operator due to the blood coating his phone.
Helped by a neighbour and a friend who is a nurse, he was rushed to hospital where the neck wound was found to have only just missed his carotid artery.
Nielson, who had fled the blood-spattered home as his ex sought help, was later arrested nearby in his car.
The shattered mug Nielson used to attack Mr Brittin.
Neilson appeared at Northampton Crown Court today, Thursday, July 25, for sentencing, where Mr Brittin delivered a victim impact statement detailing how the attack and the injuries inflicted continued to affect him, including forcing him to give up his much-loved career as a hairdresser as well as his role as a singer in a soul band.
He detailed how the incident had turned him from an outgoing, trusting person into one who struggled to sleep, felt on edge and was unable to remain in his home of four years because he no longer felt safe there.
Mr Brittin added: “What Daniel has done destroyed me in so many ways, physically and mentally.
“The worst impact is the lack of trust I now have in people, and right now I can’t imagine getting close to anyone again.”
Judge Rupert Mayo said Neilson’s violence was prolonged, deliberate and intended to cause serious and permanent harm.
He added: “Your pre-sentence report confirms my view that you are a self-centred and extremely selfish man who has shown very little remorse.”
Nielson, of Lon Islwyn, Prestatyn, Denbighshire, was ordered to serve four years and 10 months in prison.
He was also given a 10-year restraining order preventing him from approaching Mr Brittin or contacting him by any means.
Mr Brittin's injuries included this 4cm temple and 5cm neck wound, as well as a 2cm scalp wound, a laceration to his ear, and wounds to the back of his neck and his hand.
Investigating officer Detective Constable Martin Green, of Kettering CID, said: “There had been domestic abuse-related issues in the relationship before it came to an end, after which Ashley was doing what he could to support Nielson in moving on when he launched this attack.
“What is particularly shocking is that having delivered the first blow in what he described as a red mist, nearly knocking Ashley out, Nielson then kept hitting him with a broken mug that was nothing less than a weapon – there’s no other way to describe it.
“Beyond his initial admission in interview, Nielson has shown no remorse over what he did.
“As a result of the injury to his hand, Ashley has been prevented from continuing his career as a hairdresser, and has felt he must grow a beard to hide the scar to his neck to avoid being asked about it.”
Fellow investigator Detective Constable Sarah-Jane Roberts added: “Today’s sentence reflects the severity and continuing nature of this attack, and sends a clear message that those who inflict such harm will be severely punished.
“Northamptonshire Police takes domestic violence very seriously and I hope this result will encourage others who have seen signs of control, abuse or violence from partners or family to leave, before things get worse, and seek help and support to get the justice they deserve.”
Speaking outside court, Mr Brittin, who has now embarked on a career as a flight attendant, welcomed Neilson’s prison sentence.
He said: “I feel very happy that this is all over now and he has got what he deserved. Hopefully the sentence will make him think twice before he decides to attack anyone in the future, as well as giving me the chance to move on with my life.
“Whether you’re gay, straight, bisexual, if you’re a man who is affected by domestic violence my advice would be to come forward and report it, because otherwise one day you might end up dead.
“Northamptonshire Police has been absolutely amazing the whole way through this process, from the officers at the scene whose first aid saved my life, to today’s result. I’ve been really impressed and am very grateful.”
**Mr Brittin has given permission for the release of his name and the images of his injuries**