SOCIAL workers say a man who 'viciously' attacked his partner in a drink-fuelled street assault and dragged her around by her hair has 'respect' for her.

Graham Falconer placed both of his hands around the terrified woman's neck until she screamed — drawing the attention of people in a nearby house.

The 35-year-old continued with his wanton violence even though a man had come outside and stopped him from punching his partner, telling Falconer: "I don't think so."

Procurator fiscal Ziad Ul Hassan said the 6pm incident sparked an emergency 999 call to police, who turned up to find the victim 'extremely distressed, crying and hysterical'.

Falconer — who later spat on a police officer — has now been jailed for the incident, which occurred after he was released early from a prison sentence for carrying a knife.

Mr Ul Hassan told the court: "Witnesses were watching TV within their living room when their attention was drawn to the footpath outside because they heard the screams of a female.

"They looked out and saw the accused to have both of his hands around the neck of his partner.

"This was causing her a considerable amount of distress and she was screaming at the top of her voice.

"A male witness came outside and the accused viciously began pulling at his partner's hair and dragged her around.

"The man intervened when he saw the accused attempt to strike his partner on the face with a clenched fist."

The court heard how Falconer proceeded to drag the woman towards their home on Murdieston Street before booting open the close door and 'shoving her inside'.

Police arrived to find him shouting at her for losing the house keys.

He then turned on the officers and threatened to 'smash' them and subsequently spat on one officer's leg as he was being placed into a squad car, shouting: "You shouldnae have been standing in my way — you're lucky it wisnae yer face."

At Greenock police officer he called one officer a 'gay boy' and threatened to spit on a PC's face.

Falconer committed the offences on August 14.

His lawyer, David Tod, said: "When Mr Falconer is sober there appears to be a structure to the relationship.

"The social work department, which has considerable insight into matters, says he has a respect for his partner.

"He successfully dealt with a heroin habit but the residue of that appears to be that he has been drinking to excess.

"His attitude [at the time of the offence] is not what he has when he's sober, and that is borne out in the background report."

Sheriff Andrew McIntyre returned Falconer to prison for the remaining 117 days of his previous sentence and imposed a further six months behind bars.

The sheriff told him: "The circumstances of this offence are absolutely awful.

"I have listened to the narration and it just got worse and worse.

"You have convictions for all manner of offences of violence and domestic abuse."