A DUMBARTON man who was spared jail for a violent assault on his partner has been warned that he could still end up being imprisoned – after he ignored a court order not to go near her home.

Mark O’Neill grabbed his victim by the hair in the attack at the house in Graham Road on May 6, before pushing and pulling her, pinning her to a wall, dragging her to the floor, and butting her and repeatedly punching her on the head.

He was granted bail at the town’s sheriff court on June 21, and again on August 5, with a special condition banning him from entering or seeking to enter the property.

But he breached that condition by going to the property on August 20-21 and behaving in a threatening or abusive manner by swinging a metal vacuum cleaner extension around the house.

Both offences were aggravated because they involved abuse of O’Neill’s partner or ex-partner.

The 32-year-old, currently of Ashton View, was handed a community payback order (CPO) as a punishment for the assault, as an alternative to a prison sentence.

O’Neill was brought back to court on Friday after being remanded in custody for the bail breach.

His solicitor, Steven Wight, told Sheriff Maxwell Hendry: “He acknowledges the position he is in.

“His hope today is that your Lordship would release him to commence the CPO; through his own fault, he has not been able to do that.

Sheriff Hendry said: “There is a very worrying picture emerging when I look at all these matters together.

“There is a serious uphill struggle here before I can consider releasing him back into the community.”

Turning to address O’Neill directly, the sheriff added: “I have to think about sending you to prison for quite a long time.”

O’Neill was told he would remain in custody until the case next calls on October 16.