A FORMER soldier who carried out a savage attack on his girlfriend during a bust-up over a missed bus has been jailed.

Iain Black attacked his partner after she told him she wanted to get a taxi home after the pair had missed a late bus.

Black and his partner had been drinking all day at a friend’s garden party in Prestonpans and were walking home when the violence erupted.

Black, 52, grabbed the woman and threw her to the ground before sitting on top of her and repeatedly punching her to the face.

Passers-by rushed over to pull Black away from the woman, who suffered severe facial bruising and a fractured elbow during the late-night attack.

Black told officers that the woman had told him to “f*** off” during the argument and he had “just lost it” before launching the horror assault last July.

Black was arrested at the scene at the town’s Schaw Road and the woman was rushed to the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh for treatment to her injuries.

Black, of Old Craighall, pleaded guilty to the assault when he appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court in December and he returned to court for sentencing last Thursday.

Sheriff Norman McFadyen heard that the former soldier had two previous convictions for violence and said in his view “there is no alternative” to a custodial sentence, jailing Black for 12 months.

Sheriff McFadyen said: “I am prepared to accept you have expressed remorse. But I note you have two previous convictions for violence.

“Taking account of all that, I consider there is no other suitable way of dealing with you other than a sentence of imprisonment.”

Solicitor Eilidh Yates, defending, said Black had attempted to reconcile with the woman following the incident but “she did not want to” resume the relationship.

Ms Yates added that Black, a driver for a company which delivers hospital supplies, had retaliated after he claimed the woman had struck him first.

Previously, the court heard that Black and the woman had been at an all-day garden party and had been drinking vodka and beer while at the event.

The pair then left together to the woman’s home at about 11pm on July 7 last year.

Black then began lashing out at the woman after he realised they had missed their bus and after she had suggested getting a taxi.