A TEENAGE girl was unable to open her jaw after a man repeatedly hit her in the face with a gas canister.

Jamie-Lee Clarke attacked his 19-year-old girlfriend during a brutal and sustained attack on Southampton Common.

The 29-year-old also tried to gouge her eyes out with his thumbs during the incident that went on for most of April 18.

Clarke smiled during his sentencing at Southampton Crown Court and was even scolded by the judge for doing so.

He repeatedly punched his ex-partner in the face with such force she could feel herself swallowing blood, the court heard.

Clarke “threatened to blow her up with a gas canister”, bit her ears and punched her in the back.

She “made pleas to be released but he continued”.

At one point she swallowed her own vomit because she “did not want to upset him any further” by making a mess.

Clarke, of no fixed address, was charged with ABH – he had previously pleaded guilty.

Prosecution barrister Martyn Booth told how his victim was finally able to escape when said she needed to go to the toilet.

She was seen by a member of the public who was driving along Burgess Road.

He saw her standing on the pavement with a “mark on her face” and a black eye.

She “appeared in his eyes to be visibly shaking”.

The motorist then spotted a “male running down the road” so reversed his car.

The girl “got in the car without any hesitation” and the driver and his wife “took her straight to hospital to be looked at”.

After the attack, she was unable to open her jaw and left covered in bruises and finger marks.

Judge Christopher Parker described the incident as a “sustained and brutal” assault.

He added how the girl must have been absolutely terrified and that there is a high risk of Clarke causing serious harm to her and to women in general.

Clarke was jailed for 41 months and will be released on licence and under supervision.

He was also given a restraining order against his victim.

Defending barrister, Tom Wilkins told how Clarke is taking anti-psychotic medication and has expressed remorse. He has 28 previous court appearances for 56 offences which include theft, dishonesty, assaulting a PCSO, breaching a restraining order, harassment and for public order.

He was last convicted in May 2011 for burglary together with arson.