A JEALOUS boyfriend kicked his partner’s pet chihuahua and threw it 20 feet across a room in front of a horrified four-year-old boy.
Mark Williams became so angry that he punched his own television and partially throttled his girlfriend before venting his rage on her tiny dog.
The 38-year-old had been out drinking before he returned to their home in Tiverton and launched the assault in March last year, leaving her and the child with psychological trauma.
Williams, of The Deanes, Tiverton, admitted intentional strangulation and causing unnecessary suffering to an animal and was jailed for 14 months, suspended for two years, put on an alcohol abstinence tag for 120 days, ordered to go on a 30-session Building Better Relationships course and do 120 hours unpaid community work by Recorder Mrs Claire Pawson-Pounds at Exeter Crown Court.
She told him: “I have read the victim personal statement about the effect on her and the young child. On any basis this was a very serious offence with very real consequences for people.
“The domestic context and the presence of a child, who has been severely impacted, are serious aggravating factors.”
Mr Nigel Wraith, prosecuting, said Williams had been in a volatile on-off relationship for some time and she was living at his home on March 31 last year when an argument started after he returned home drunk.
He became jealous, threw her mobile telephone against a wall, punched and broke his television and put one hand around her throat, obstructing her airway and leaving her gasping for breath.
He kicked her teacup chihuahua before picking it up and throwing it out of the living room and into the kitchen where it hit the oven door and could be heard yelping in pain. The owner reckoned Williams threw the dog the distance of three small cars parked end to end.
Miss Evie Dean, defending, said Williams is very remorseful and has already started addressing his use of alcohol and seeking help for mental health issues.
She said the whole incident had been short lived and the strangulation had only lasted a few moments. He has been assessed as a good prospect for rehabilitation by probation and suitable for a course to improve his attitudes and behaviour in relationships.