A MAN had to undergo surgery in hospital following a 'malicious' assault on him in January, a court was told today.

Cheltenham Magistrates heard that Oliver Cooper, 21, of Gardeners Way, Newent, is alleged to have assaulted Thomas Mortimer, from Newent, with intent to cause him grievous bodily harm on January 23 this year.

Cathy Thornton, prosecuting said: “The incident began during the early hours of January 23 when Bethany Smith dropped a glass at a property in in May Hill View Newent during a friends get together, following which an argument developed.

“Cooper is then alleged to have hit Mr Mortimer, causing him to need two plates and eight screws inserted in his face during surgery in hospital.

“It is alleged Cooper then assaulted Ms Smith and a short while later left the scene.”

The court was told that Cooper, who appeared via video link, had been arrested over the weekend.

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Ms Thornton added: “Cooper felt he was in some sort of trouble and decided he would contact the local crisis team, only he ended up contact the police.

“Officers went out to see him and realised he was wanted for the alleged assaults in January and arrested him.”

District Judge Joanne Dickens said to Cooper: “These are two serious matters which can only be heard at the crown court.

“I feel quite sure you can be managed in the community with stringent conditional bail conditions as prison is the last place you’d want to be at present.”

Cooper was released on conditional bail until his crown court hearing on May 7.