A man has been jailed for five years for glassing a woman and leaving her with a scarred face and life-changing injuries on a night out in Brighton.
Lewis Hilton was also given a five-year restraining order after the drink and drug-fuelled attack which happened on Saturday 16 July 2022.
Hilton, 26, of Craven Road, Brighton, was out drinking with friends in Brighton and had also taken a large amount of cocaine before leaving his house. He took more during the evening.
At about 3am, a friend in the group, Alicia Ancell, decided to head home and arranged a lift from Baker Street. Hilton was agitated by this and tried to stop her leaving.
As she was about to enter the vehicle to take her home, Hilton threw the contents of a pint glass at her, covering her in drink. Seconds later, Hilton whipped the glass in her direction, striking her in the face.
Ms Ancell fell to the floor and was immediately aware of a large gash to her forehead. She was taken to hospital with a fractured skull and two bleeds on the brain.
The incident was reported to the police and Hilton was arrested on Wednesday 27 July 2022 and later charged with causing grievous bodily harm (GBH).
He denied the charge and opted for a trial by jury which took place at Hove Crown Court over three days at the end of last August.
Hilton was found guilty and was sentenced by Judge Janet Waddicor, the trial judge, at Lewes Crown Court on Thursday 11 January.
Sussex Police said: “The victim prepared a powerful impact statement which was read out in court.”
It said: “Since the incident, my life has changed completely. Lewis Hilton and I were friends for at least six years and typically got on very well.
“After Lewis threw the glass at me, I felt completely betrayed by him. My physical and mental health has completely changed as a direct result of the injuries he has caused me.
“One of the biggest ways my life has been affected is in my memory. I have very poor recall and I am not able to easily process new information.
“Whenever I look in the mirror, I feel incredibly upset. The scar on my face is a physical reminder of a terrible event and the injuries have been life-changing.
“I am not myself at all and I feel like my life has been changed forever.”
Detective Sergeant Josh Bellamy said: “Lewis Hilton has been rightly convicted and imprisoned following a horrendous assault against a victim who considered him a friend.
“Hilton tried to hide behind his voluntary consumption of alcohol and cocaine as being an excuse for his actions.
“The victim, who is only 24, has been left with permanent scars which are visible reminders of what happened that night.
“Despite the significant injuries he caused to his own friend, he maintained that he had been unjustly treated and that he was not ultimately responsible for his actions.”
At the sentencing hearing, Ms Ancell’s mother said that her daughter was “a shadow of her former self” and had “completely changed”.
Judge Waddicor said: “That young woman’s life is going to be very different. It already is – and will remain so.
“Her driving licence has been withdrawn and there is no evidence that she will be able to find and hold down a job.
“She previously had been very sociable and that has changed too. All of this is because that night you were so drunk and so affected by drugs. All of that is because of your behaviour.”