A MUSSELBURGH man grabbed his partner by the hair and dragged her out his flat, ripping her t-shirt from her.

David Couch, 33, and his girlfriend had been out for the evening and arrived back at his home at the town’s Moir Avenue, a court heard.

But soon after returning the couple became engaged in a fight which saw Couch grab the woman by the hair and drag her from the property.

A neighbour overheard the commotion out in the street and decided to call in the police after the woman was seen to be “screaming for help”.

Police arrived at the scene to find the woman “extremely distressed” and Couch soon admitted he had assaulted her.

Couch pleaded guilty to an amended charge of assault when he appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

He claimed he had been stabbed with a fork by the woman.

Prosecutor Clare Kennedy told the court that the couple had been out socialising on August 25 last year and had returned to Couch’s home address in the early hours of the morning.

Ms Kennedy said: “After arriving home an argument began between them with Mr Couch began angry with the woman.

“He has grabbed her by the hair and dragged her out of the flat.

“Once outside he again grabbed hold of her by the t-shirt and has ripped the t shirt from her.

“As a result of this she was screaming for help.

“A neighbour has overheard the disturbance and called the police.

“When police arrived, the woman was there and was extremely distressed and was missing her t shirt.”

Officers then spoke to Couch and he accepted he had carried out the assault.

Colm Dempsey, defending solicitor, said his unemployed client had been in a relationship with the woman for five years but that “relationship is now over”.

Mr Dempsey said the relationship had been “plagued by substance abuse” and on the evening of the assault there had been “excessive drinking by the complainer”.

He added: “An argument ensued and he asked her to leave and she refused.

“There was an argument and she was belligerent but he should have dealt with the matter better.

“He tells there was a struggle in which he was stabbed with a fork.

“He accepts acting in the manner liabled by removing her from the property. He regrets that behaviour.”

Sheriff John Cook said: “Due to this being an assault and you have previous convictions for assault and were recently imprisoned the court has to obtain a social work report.”

Sentence was deferred to later this month.

Couch admitted to assaulting the woman by seizing her by the hair, pulling her from the address and seizing her by the clothing at Moir Avenue, Musselburgh, on August 25 last year.