THE family of Claire Hilton have told of their daughter’s continued torment 12 months on from the one punch attack which left her paralysed.
The 29-year-old was drinking with pals in the Wheatsheaf pub, in West Boldon, last year, when an argument over a spilt drink ended in tragedy.
Mum-of-one Claire was followed out of the pub and attacked by Christopher Towers, leaving her with a broken neck, which snapped in three places, and a broken back.
Towers, 24, of New Road, Boldon Colliery, was jailed for three years and seven months – a term that the family are still angry with.
Claire’s dad Paddy, 57, of Downhill, Sunderland, said: “The sentence he got was terrible, within six to 12 months he will probably be out. Claire is left with the consequences.”
A year on from the assault Paddy and wife Janice said Claire – mum to 12-year-old Callum – is struggling to cope.
Paddy said: “It has just been horrendous, that’s all I can say. On Friday she said ‘one year ago I was getting ready to go out, now I cannot even get myself ready.”
The attack left former Boldon Comprehensive pupil Claire in intensive care for a month and she now needs 24-hour help from family, friends and carers.