A teenage thug whose single punch left an 18-year-old with a fractured skull has walked free from court with a suspended sentence.

Jake Thomas Cowin, 19, of Ballacraine, St John’s, admitted causing grievous bodily harm in relation to the unprovoked attack outside the 1886 Bar on Regent Street, Douglas, on August 26 last year.

Then aged 18, he had got into a drunken argument with another teenager, pushing him and throwing a drink at him before punching him once.

His victim fell to the ground unconscious, banging his head on the pavement.

Cowin simply left him there and ran away.

The casualty was taken to hospital suffering from multiple fractures.

Deemster Graeme Cook told him: ‘You behaved, didn’t you, like a thug.’

He pointed out that others have died as a result of a single punch. ‘Fortunately for you, he did survive,’ the Deemster told him.

A statement by the victim said the attack had impacted on him physically and mentally. He said he had been left extremely anxious, struggled to get to sleep and was ‘constantly checking over my shoulder’.

A worker in the retail sector, he said he had been left with a black eye, swollen face and still had a scar over his right eye.

Defence advocate David Reynolds said his client had shown genuine remorse, had no previous convictions and had entered a guilty plea at the earliest opportunity. He said he had been in constant employment since leaving school and had been working as a self-employed gardener.

The Deemster accepted that the defendant was remorseful but had left a ‘devastating and ongoing’ effect on his victim.

He imposed a 20-month sentence suspended for 24 months, with a 24-month supervision order. Cowin was ordered to pay his victim £2,000 in compensation plus prosecution costs of £300.