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Soldier Shaun Smith stamped on man's face in Yorkshire attackGetty

A soldier who stamped on a man's face during a shocking attack after a drinking session has escaped a prison sentence.

Shaun Smith, 25, from Livingston, and an accomplice beat up two men near to Catterick Garrison, in north Yorkshire.

Smith repeatedly stamped on the man's face during the incident and then fled the scene to hide in a stream to evade police. Smith and his co-attacker then returned to the barracks.

Smith was handed a 12-month suspended sentence at Teeside Crown Court for assault causing actual bodily harm.

He and his accomplice claimed they were threatened by an attacker with a knife, but the defence was rejected.

Speaking ahead of sentencing, victim James Wormald said Smith should have been convicted of the more serious offence of grievous bodily harm.

"They started on us before we even had time to realise what was going on. I can remember little about it but I've seen the CCTV and I'm as shocked as anyone else," said Wormald.

"To stamp on someone that many times and get away with only being sentenced for actual bodily harm is wrong."