A 23-year-old man spat in his girlfriend’s face, punched her and put his hands around her throat during a bust-up at the victim’s flat, a court heard on Friday.

Ryan Edwards, of Pen y Graig, Denbigh, unemployed, was placed under a two-year community order with 250 hours unpaid work and a rehabilitation activity. He must also pay £1,000 compensation and £185 costs after admitting common assault on Lana Colwell at Rhyl and criminal damage to walls and fittings.

Magistrates at Llandudno imposed an indefinite restraining order banning contact with the victim. Court chairwoman Janet Ellis said: "We are very concerned about the seriousness of this case.”

Prosecutor Diane Williams said the victim alleged she had been thrown around “like a rag doll” and Edwards had put his teeth against her cheek. He used a bread knife to stab a wall.

A probation officer said Edwards was a cannabis smoker brought up by his grandparents. The relationship had ended.

Nia Dawson, defending, said Edwards welcomed the help of the probation service. He described it as a “toxic” relationship.