A MAN who was stabbed 14 years ago was plagued by memories of the incident after he was attacked in a Hampshire pub, a court was told.

He was drinking at the Elephant and Castle in Commercial Road, Totton, when he was bitten on the left cheek by a complete stranger who later assaulted a police officer.

James Mark Harfield appeared at Southampton Crown Court and was handed an 18-month community order.

New Forest Post:

Michael Shilliday, prosecuting, said Harfield was apprehended by police after the incident at the Elephant and Castle and kicked an officer on the arm, causing soreness.

Mr Shilliday said the bite victim was stabbed in 2006 and blinded in his right eye.

In a personal impact statement submitted to the court the man said memories of the attack came flooding back after the incident involving Harfield.

He added: "I had to have counselling from victim support. My self-confidence has been affected - it's really affected my quality of life."

Keely Harvey, mitigating, said the defendant inflicted the bite after suffering what she described as a "mental health breakdown".

She added: "He wishes he knew what made him do it - he is still very much in the dark. I think he was angry at the world.

"His behaviour since this matter has been good. He wants to work to put this right and is willing to do what it takes."

New Forest Post:

Harfield, 21, of Kilnyard Close, Totton, had previously pleaded guilty to one count of assault and one of assaulting an emergency worker. He also admitted breaching a community order imposed in 2019 for criminal damage and sending an offensive communication.

Passing sentence Judge Nicholas Rowland told him: "These were serious offences.

"You bit someone out of the blue, with no provocation, and brought back very unpleasant memories from years before - and then you assaulted a police officer."

Harfield was handed an 18-month community order with a requirement to complete a total of 295 hours of unpaid work.