Smiling attacker who glassed a former friend in a pub leaving her scarred for life walks free from courtColleen Robson left Charlene Pulford needing stitches to a three inch gash on the top of her head after the attack in DarlingtonDespite having committed an almost identical offence four years previously, Robson was given community service and a fineThe court heard how Robson cares for her disabled mother and brother
14:17 GMT, 16 December 2012
Worried: Colleen Robson was pictured smiling as she arrived at Darlington Crown Court for sentencing
A woman who glassed a former friend leaving her needing a fragment of glass removed from her head walked free from court after a judge spared her a jail term.
Colleen Robson attacked Charlene Pulford in Harvey's Bar, Darlington, back in June leaving her needing seven stitches in a three inch wound in the top of her head.
She had arrived at court with a suitcase expecting a jail term, and though her barrister told the judge she was 'worried' about a custodial sentence, Robson appeared to be smiling outside before sentencing.
And despite having avoided prison for an almost identitcal offence involving a glass in a pub four years ago, Robson, 27, was handed a suspended sentence and ordered to do community service.
In a victim statement Miss Pulford, 30, told how the attack left her feeling sickened and shocked at what her one time lodger was capable of.
Robson was ordered to do 200 hours community service and to pay 300 in compensation after admitting the attack.
Sentencing Robson, Judge Gillian Matthews QC, said: 'It was unpleasant and it is serious – using a weapon in a public place causing a wound merits custody.
'I have had to pause long and hard to consider this. When you walked into the dock this morning, I was very clear I would be sending you to custody.
'Taking into account all the positive factors I know about you and that this was not a prolonged indcident, I can suspend the sentence of imprisonment.'
Robson's barrister Dan Cordley said that the though of jail had 'worried her greatly'. He told the judge that Robson cares for her disabled mother and brother and provided references which 'give an indication of another side to her.'
Free: Colleen Robson, 27, was spared jail at Teesside Crown Court, pictured
The court heard how the two women fell out about two years ago and Robson's attempts via Facebook to rekindle the friendship were rebuffed.
Since the incident, she has been barred from pubs and clubs, and Mr Cordey said: 'She has willingly abided by that. She realises it has got her into trouble.'
He added: 'If she doesn't go to custody today, Colleen Robson knows it will be by the skin of her teeth and that there will be no further chances.'