A GATECRASHER at a house party punched a man in the face, knocking four teeth out of his victim’s mouth.

Thomas Harris punched Malachi Chin when he was refused a cannabis cigarette at the party in Lilac Way, Winklebury, on November 24 last year.

The 19-year-old, of no fixed abode, appeared at Winchester Crown Court for sentence having admitted unlawful wounding at a previous hearing.

Kerry Maylin, prosecuting, said the party took place at the house of Stacey Griffiths, and that a number of people came to the party whom Ms Griffiths did not know.

She said: “At about 2am, Thomas Harris approached Malachi Chin and asked him for some of the cannabis joint that was being smoked. Malachi Chin said it was not his and then Thomas Harris punched him in the face.”

The court heard Mr Chin lost three front teeth and a canine, and was taken to Basingstoke hospital before he was transferred to Guildford for surgery.

Harris, who fled the house after the punch, handed himself in to Basingstoke police station, after Hampshire Constabulary released a picture of him as part of a Christmas most wanted list.

Nicholas Rowland, defending, said Harris spent four months in custody after his arrest.

He added: “It was some punch, but just one punch. He pleaded guilty and he is remorseful for what he has done to Mr Chin.”

The court heard that Harris had previous convictions for assaulting police officers, including two occasions where he spat at officers.

Judge Guy Boney said: “This offending has got to stop because if it does not you are going to be before this court time after time with longer periods of incarceration.”

Harris was given an 18-month community order, with supervision and 120 hours of unpaid work. He was also ordered to attend a course addressing the problems of drunken violence.