'Offending like that has an impact on all of us': Leeds city centre attack victim suffered broken jaw after being punched by drunk thug in unprovoked assault
A man had to have metal plates fitted to his face after suffering a broken jaw in an unprovoked attack in Leeds city centre as he was out celebrating New Year with his friends.
The victim had to eat a liquid diet for six weeks after the shocking attack carried out by Jake Mescus.
Leeds Crown Court heard 23-year-old Mescus turned violent after arguing with his girlfriend as they were on a night out together.
Muneeb Akram, prosecuting, said Mescus walked up to the victim without warning and confronted him on Albion Street.
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The victim said "I don't want to have a fight" before the defendant punched him hard to the face.
The victim's friends tried to intervene but Mescus then punched another man in the face, causing him to suffer a split lip.
Mescus walked off after the attack but was followed by the witnesses who used mobile phones to film him.
The footage was later used by West Yorkshire Police to trace Mescus.
Mr Akram said the victim had to undergo surgery at Leeds General Infirmary hours after the attack to have metal plates and screws fitted to his face.
He was unable to eat solid food for weeks after the incident.
Mescus, of Coniston Road, Redcar, pleaded guilty to inflicting grievous bodily harm and affray.
Tom Bennett, mitigating, said Mescus has no previous convictions and described his client's behaviour as being out of character.
Mr Bennett said Mescus had not been in trouble since the incident which took place in the early hours of January 1, 2020.
The barrister said Mescus has a stable job and worked hard to support his partner and young child.
Mr Bennett said: "He asks me to express on his behalf his deepest regret and sorrow.
"He behaved appallingly. What was supposed to be a New Year's Eve night out with his partner turned sour and it put others in the firing line.
"It started out with an argument with his partner."
Mescus was given a 14-month prison sentence, suspended for 18 months.
He was also ordered to do 100 hours of unpaid work and complete five rehabilitation activity requirement days.
Recorder Kama Melly QC also ordered that Mescus pay £1,000 compensation.
She said: "He told you that he did not want any trouble, that he did not want to fight you.
"Seemingly, that wasn't enough for you.
"You struck him with a blow incredibly hard.
"Having had surgery, that man could not eat food for six weeks because you wanted to punch him.
"Offending like that has an impact on all of us. People are scared to go out into town centres because there are thugs like you who want to punch people in the face.
"This court deals with people who die from one single punch and people can end up serving lengthy prison sentences."
Recorder Melly told Mescus he had come close to being sent immediately to prison.
She said: "Whatever the causes of the delay in the case being brought before me, it has been of assistance to you because in that period of time you have demonstrated that you have have not involved yourself in other acts of violence."