AN ALLOA man has avoided prison after pleading guilty to punching and kicking a man until he was unconscious.

Dean Bruce appeared at Alloa Sheriff Court last Thursday for the sickening assault, during which he punched his victim multiple times before kicking him repeatedly.

Susannah Hutchison, depute fiscal, told Alloa Sheriff Court that on February 16 of last year, the complainer invited Bruce round to his house on Hill Park for drinks.

At around 10.30pm the complainer and Bruce began arguing over texts the accused had exchanged with a female who was also at the gathering.

Ms Hutchison: “The pair were in the living room and a fight started when the complainer was punched on the side of the head by the accused.”

The punch caused the victim to fall to the ground before Bruce climbed on top of him and punched him “six or seven times” before getting up and kicking him repeatedly.

A short while later the complainer regained consciousness.

He then went to Alloa police station and reported Bruce who was traced and arrested on February 19. The accused told officers it was “self-defence”.

He added that the complainer told him he would “murder him if he texted her again”, referring to the female from the party, and went on to say that he was attacked first by the complainer.

Ms Hutchison added that Bruce was heard saying: “Do you ken who you’re messing with?” and “I showed you”, before stating to officers that he gave him “15 drives to the face”.

The complainer refused medical treatment but had a swollen right eye and bruising on the forehead.

Jim Savage, representing the 26-year-old, told the court that this was an “undoubtedly serious” matter, and said his client’s assertion that it was the complainer who started the fight was “irrelevant compared to how it finished”.

Mr Savage added: “He accepts what was wrong regardless of how it happened.”

He went on to say that it is an offence which would merit a custodial sentence, but pleaded for leniency based on the fact it was Bruce’s first conviction.

Sheriff David Mackie agreed, but scolded Bruce’s claim that it was self-defence, and said: “This is really quite a serious matter. Self-defence is only to fend off an attack."

He sentenced Bruce, of Ashley Terrace, to 220 hours of unpaid work and 12 months of supervision.