A MAN sustained a fractured nose after being headbutted at a town hotel.

Michael Joshua Wheate, of Caegwyn, Llanidloes, pleaded guilty to common assault occasioning actual bodily harm when he appeared at Welshpool Magistrates Court.

The court heard that Wheate, 24, assaulted Charles Leguay, at the Elephant Hotel, in Llanidloes on April 24.

Justin Espie, prosecuting, said the incident happened at 2am and both the defendant and the victim, who were known to each other, were in the smoking area, an alley covered by CCTV.

They were diffusing an argument between females before the victim approached Wheate.

Mr Espie played CCTV of the incident to the court and said: "The victim approaches Wheate, touches his left arm, they are in conversation for a few seconds and there is no animosity between them.

"The defendant then turns, removes his baseball cap and there is a full-force headbutt to the face, causing the victim to fall backwards.

"He received a cut to his nose and a fracture to the nose. Later the defendant sent the victim a message saying "sorry, didn't know it was you"."

Mr Espie added that Mr Leguay had written a victim impact statement describing how the incident had affected him emotionally, financially and impacted on his confidence.

Robert Hanratty, defending, said Wheate, who works at Laura Ashley in Carno, had no previous convictions and the incident was totally out of character.

"He is a hard-working young man and very remorseful", he said. "He is not normally a violent person."

A statement read out by the probation service said that Wheate had undergone an operation on his hand for carpal tunnel syndrome, and that his arm was painful.

When it was touched by the victim he felt threatened and vulnerable, but regretted his actions.

Chair of the magistrates bench Sarah Sargent said: "This was clearly an unprovoked incident causing injury."

She handed Wheate an 18 month community order to include 25 rehabilitation days and 150 hours of unpaid work.

Wheate will also pay £250 in compensation to Mr Leguay, £85 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.