THE victim of horrific domestic abuse has bravely spoken out to warn others in abusive relationships.

Carla Marsh, 31, was subjected to controlling behaviour by her abusive partner James Sullivan, 38, throughout seven months of their relationship.

This behaviour, which Miss Marsh said left her broken and “feeling worthless”, culminated in a horrifying attack in November last year.

Sullivan admitted flying into a rage over a pair of lost flip flops.

Colchester Magistrates’ Court previously heard he grabbed Miss Marsh by the throat for between ten and 15 seconds, before pulling her hair and hurling her onto a bed.

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He then kicked her in the face and spat on her.

Philip Pearson, prosecuting, previously outlined a host of previous convictions for abusive behaviour, which include an attack on a woman who was five weeks pregnant.

He labelled Sullivan a “serial domestic abuser”.

Sullivan, of Carol Street, London, admitted charges of engaging in controlling and coercive behaviour and assault by beating.

The thug was jailed for a total of 18 months at Chelmsford Crown Court on Monday.

Miss Marsh, from Colchester, said she had been unsure about attending Sullivan’s sentencing hearing as she didn’t want to see him “laughing at her”.

She said she was left stunned at the “leniency” he was shown by the courts.

“I was scared he would come home and finish what he started,” she said.

“I have a ten-year-old son and I shielded him as best I could.

“I still have nerve damage in my face. I get spasms between my nose and my mouth.

“I do have my mum, a lot of my friends are in London but my neighbour has been helping me out.”

Clacton and Frinton Gazette:

Brave - Carla Marsh suffered nerve damage to her face in the attack.

Speaking directly to others in abusive relationships, Miss Marsh warned them to get out and be safe.

She added: “If they do it once they are going to keep doing it.

“If you have the opportunity to get out then get out.

“Unfortunately, you will have to prepare yourself for the fact that you will go through a lot, go through interviews and reports.

“You will relive it and then have to deal with the fact they don’t get the sentence they deserve.

“I got a kick in the teeth from him and another kick in the teeth from the courts.

“It is a complete joke that he was allowed to get such a trivial sentence for something that has left me with permanent injuries.

“I fully understand why victims’ families and friends take justice into their own hands when the end result of months of anxiousness, statements and medical appointments is a sentence like this.

“I will suffer the consequences of the attack long after he has served his sentence and his next victim may not be so lucky.

“I have been left to feel like the attack on me was nothing.

“I have now realised that I have nothing to hide or to be ashamed of.”