A MAN who bit another man’s lip during a fight, tearing the flesh, has been found not guilty of wounding, but guilty of assault.

The man appeared before Justice Alan Blow in the Supreme Court in Burnie yesterday.

It was a unanimous verdict.

During closing submissions crown prosecutor Allison Shand told the jury to dismiss the idea that the man could have been acting in self defence, even with knowledge that the complainant had a knife.

“This piece of evidence is a red herring,” she said.

Ms Shand pointed out that the accused man wasn’t even aware the complainant had a knife, saying the complainant didn’t show it to him.

“You might think if (the complainant) was the aggressor then the knife would have been out,” she said.

Ms Shand said that while the complainant may not be “as pure as the driven snow” he was an honest witness.

Defence counsel Natalie Everett argued that the fact the complainant bit the accused man on the nose, whether before or after the man bit the complainant’s lip, meant the accused man’s actions were not excessive.

She said that if the lip bite had happened before the complainant bit him, then it couldn’t be excessive because it didn’t stop the fight, and if it occurred after then it was no different to what was happening to him, and therefore not excessive.

Ms Everett also reminded the jury the man had told police “I didn’t expect to bite a chunk out of his lip”.

The man was bailed to reappear for sentencing on September 13.

Guilty of assault

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