A MAN claimed he bit a suspected love rival on Weymouth seafront in self defence, a jury heard.

Gary Jones, of Bayard Road, Weymouth is on trial at Dorchester Crown Court accused of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

It is alleged that he attacked Jonathan Storey on The Esplanade in the early hours of December 23, 2012 because he suspected the alleged victim of dating his former partner.

Jones is accused of biting the thumb of Mr Storey after throwing him to the floor.

The jury heard that before the fight Jones had seen Storey at the bar of a pub with Jones’s former partner, describing their relationship as ‘over familiar’.

Jones added it was only after Storey promised him nothing was going but then met up with her that same night after their conversation that his anger began to escalate.

Tim Shorter, representing Jones, asked his client to go through the details of the fight and how it developed in his own words. Jones told the jury he had ‘no opportunity to withdraw’ from the fight that developed with Storey.

He added: “My face and neck were pinned to the floor by his hands, and I bit his thumb when his finger went into my mouth, but only to stop him and to get out of what he was doing to me.”

The trial continues.