Thug broke reveller's jaw in two places in 3am attack in Sunderland city centre
A brute who broke a man's jaw in two places on a night out which left him needing metal screws to hold it in place has avoided jail.
Jack Casey, 21, kicked his victim in the head causing the fractures during the attack in Sunderland city centre.
Newcastle Crown Court heard the victim had been at Illusion nightclub before leaving at about 3am with a group of friends.
As he walked to meet his sister at "the point" near Park Lane he encountered Casey and two others who challenged him to a fight.
Vince Ward, prosecuting, said: "He had no idea why the defendant was interested in fighting with him."
Mr Ward added that all the victim remembers of what happened next was a single kick which contacted with his head.
CCTV footage of the incident showed Casey "kicking him with his left leg at head height which missed, then kicking him, again with his left leg, contacting with his head and breaking his jaw."
The two then went their separate ways on September 26, 2017, and the victim's sister called the police.
Police obtained the CCTV and traced Casey and officers spoke to him, but did not arrest him immediately.
Mr Ward read the victim impact statement to the court and said: "He has to wear a metal plate and screws to hold his jaw in place and that's something he has to live with for the rest of his life."
Vic Laffey, defending, explained that it has been nearly two years since the incident and said: "If it has produced any evidence it has shown that somebody like him has the ability to change his ways.
"This is a young man who has turned his life around."
Mr Laffey told the court that Casey is a father to two young children whom he supports financially, he has reduced his alcohol intake significantly and is in employment.
He said: "Casey was distressed at the injuries he caused this man.
"As things stand he is a different person to the one he was two years ago."
Casey pleaded guilty to grievous bodily harm and affray at an earlier hearing.
Ms Recorder Allison Hunter QC described the attack as an "unprovoked and quite horrible assault" but added that she could see he had taken steps to live a better life.
Ms Recorder Hunter said: "Taking all the mitigating factors into account it is a sentence of custody that I can suspend."
Ms Recorder Hunter sentenced Casey, of North Durham Street, Sunderland, to 18 months, suspended for two years.
Casey was also ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work and to pay £250 compensation to the victim.