A MAN has avoided prison after attacking a security guard and leaving him with a broken nose and broken eye sockets.

Ricky Morris, 20, of Rayleigh Road, Stanford-le-Hope, was handed a nine-month prison sentence suspended for 18 months for his drunken one-punch attack at Talk nightclub at Basildon Crown Court on Friday.

Prosecuting, John Carmichael said: “The victim was a security door supervisor at talk nightclub in Southend.

“It was a Saturday night and he was called inside the club because there was a disturbance which involved Ricky Morris at about 3am.

“He went into the club – there was other door staff already engaged. Four were carrying out Morris and the victim accompanied them as they took him out.

“He was ejected from the club and then walked across the road to barriers nearby. He came back and spoke to the victim and was asking about his girlfriend and his coat.

“He was told that he could text his partner for her to come outside and meet him.

“The victim then turned his back and thought relations were now amicable but without warning he says he felt a shooting pain in the left-hand side of his face.”

In CCTV footage shown to the judge, but not the courtroom, Morris could reportedly be seen punching the victim in the face before leaving the scene.

The court heard the victim suffered a badly broken nose and two broken eye-sockets and had to have multiple corrective surgeries requiring him to take periods of time off work.

Morris admitted one count of causing grievous bodily harm when he appeared for a plea and trial preparation hearing in March this year.

Sentencing Morris, who appeared in the dock in jeans and a black shirt, just Samantha Leigh said: "On your own admission, you were incredibly drunk and you lashed out and punched him.

"That broke not only his nose but also his eye sockets because of where the punch landed."

Judge Leigh told Morris the nature of the attack meant the offence crossed the custody threshold but that she was prepared to suspend the prison sentence.

Morris was handed a nine-month prison sentence suspended for 18 months.

He must also complete 200 hours of unpaid work and 40 days of a rehabilitation activity requirement.

Judge Leigh also ordered he be subject to a three-month curfew banning him from leaving his home between the hours of 8pm and 6am.

The court ordered him to pay £1,000 in compensation to the victim.