A MAN who sent his former partner almost 50 vile social media messages over the course of 12 hours has claimed in court that his victim had apologised for calling the police to report the abuse.

Stephen Pringle sent the woman a stream of insulting and abusive WhatsApp messages on the night of April 18 and the early hours of the following day.

The 35-year-old was sentenced at Dumbarton Sheriff Court on Friday after pleading guilty at an earlier hearing to a charge of behaving in a threatening or abusive way towards the woman at a property in the town’s Castlehill Quadrant by repeatedly sending her text and voice messages, calling her abusive names and threatening her with violence.

Fiscal depute Meghan Glancey told the hearing: “The complainer and the accused were in a relationship for a year; it ended a month before the libel.

“On April 18 the complainer was within her home address when between 10pm that night and 10am the next morning she received 45 Whatsapp voice recordings from the accused stating various insults, calling her a slut, a fat slag and also making threats to kill her.”

Pringle told the court: “I’m admitting full responsibility for my actions. The incident happened over a weekend; police arrested me almost a week after that. In between, [the victim] apologised to me for phoning the police and for her actions.”

Sheriff Simon Pender made Pringle the subject of a community payback order which will see him supervised for six months, and ordered him to do 100 hours of unpaid work.