A MAN attacked a woman with a dart after accusing her of hiding his cigarettes.
The victim had been marking her birthday and invited him to join the celebrations, magistrates in Wigan heard.
But the event turned sour when Michael Cox, who like his victim had been drinking, punched her, scratched her and injured her neck with the dart.
The woman, who is from Hindley, required hospital treatment.
Cox, 48, of Douglas House, Scholes, Wigan, admitted beating the woman on October 16 and was remanded on conditional bail by magistrates for pre-sentence reports to be compiled.
Ms Debbie Parry, prosecuting, said the pair had been in a relationship since 1995 but when the woman said she was holding a 30th party he had effectively invited himself.
The event stared amenably and everybody got on well for some time.
But gradually the atmosphere degenerated as the drinks started to flow and Cox became angry when he couldn’t find his cigarettes, which he blamed on the woman.
Cox squared up to the host who then felt a blow to the side of her ear which she attributed to being “thumped” and the pair then ended up on the floor “wrestling.”
In a statement the woman said that she was drunk and tired at the time of the attack. But she had started “freaking out” when blood started streaming out of her head and one of her children told her she had been “stabbed” by a dart Cox was holding.
She told police officers: “He does scare me when he gets into this kind of mood.”
Cox has a previous conviction for assault when he was given a suspended prison sentence in 2008.
Mark Ferguson (defending) said that Cox accepted that he had caused the injuries to the woman by way of the dart.
But said that it was a case of him still holding the dart because he had been playing a game on the board inside the house with the hand he was still holding it in, rather than any deliberate use of the dart as a weapon.
Mr Fergusson said: “A lot of the evidence was given by a woman who was drunk at the time.”
He agrees that there was an argument about the whereabouts of his cigarettes.
“But he says that an argument broke out between the mother and her son and he got stuck in the middle of it.
“He says that any assault occurred because of a blow that was a cross between a push and a punch.
“He had not intended to cause an injury was the dart and he doesn’t remember holding the dart at the time but he accepts he punctured her skin with it and that he had been playing darts earlier.”
He will appear again before Wigan Magistrates’ Court on January 30 for sentencing to take place.