A NEWBUILD sales manager who was left fighting for his life as a result of an unprovoked one-punch nightclub assault said the lenient sentence handed down to his attacker “doesn’t feel like justice”.

Ben Pennington, 31, suffered a fractured skull and bleed on the brain after being attacked by Tony Parsons in the Level One nightclub, Darwen, on October 15, 2016.

Mr Pennington spent three weeks in a coma as a result of the attack and then a further five months in hospital. At one stage doctors thought he might be left permanently brain damaged.

Parsons, of Fore Street, Darwen, was this week found guilty of unlawful wounding and jailed for three years and eight months.

Preston Crown Court heard how 29-year-old Parsons had a string of convictions, and Mr Pennington said he feared that if the thug wasn’t jailed he would go on to murder somebody.

Mr Pennington said: “I am quite emotionless about it. Every person I have told the sentence about has said, ‘what. Is that it?’ They are exactly right.

“I was speaking to the detective in my case at court and they said it’s only because the NHS looked after me so phenomenally that he wasn’t charged with something more serious. It’s only because of medical science and the way it has progressed that I am still alive. It is only because the NHS came to the rescue that he is not spending a lot longer in prison.”

Within hours of the attack Mr Pennington’s father, Mark, posted a harrowing image of his son on Facebook wired up to a ventilator at Royal Preston Hospital in a bid to identify the person who attacked Ben.

It was that post that led to the key witness who was able to identify Parsons as the man who punched Mr Pennington to come forward.

Mr Pennington, who lives in Walton-Le-Dale, said that throughout the trial he was pessimistic about the chances of Parsons being found guilty, given the two-year battle to even get it to court.

He said: “He is clearly an absolute loser who has nothing going for him.

“He has gone through every single police interview ‘no comment’. He has not given a statement even though he was grabbed by the doorman on the night.

“He didn’t go into the witness box during the trial. To this day I have been sat two yards away from him and I have never heard him say anything.

“They read his previous convictions to the jury and he has been charged with six or seven assaults in the last five years. He is not a good human.

“I had never seen him before. I had never spoken to him before. I had no knowledge of him before that night.

“If the jury’s decision hadn’t gone our way I think in time he would have killed someone. It is not safe for him to be on the streets.”

He added: “I am doing all right now. I have got a fantastic job, a wonderful family and girlfriend and I am back on my feet. He has nothing.

“But it’s distressing to think that someone I had never met could impact on my life in such a massive way. With good behaviour he’ll be out in two years where I have got to live with what he’s done for the rest of my life.”

Mr Pennington thanked his dad, mum Nikki and girlfriend, Sarah, for their support.