THE brutal rapist jailed for 16 years for a horrific attack in Bournemouth's Lower Gardens was convicted five years ago of holding his girlfriend at knifepoint and biting her face.

Luke West threatened to kill his girlfriend at her New Milton home and was sent to prison by a judge who said: "My concern is the protection of the public from further serious acts committed by you."

Recorder Donald Tait jailed West for four years at Southampton Crown Court and added: "You’ve demonstrated controlling and aggressive behaviour and still continue to commit violent acts."

The court heard West, whose address was given as Winchester prison at the time, arrived at a house in New Milton, on January 22 2015, demanding that he could see his partner.

Luke West jailed for 16 years for Lower Gardens rape

Prosecutor Tom Wilkins told the hearing how West accused her of infidelity before picking up a knife he found close by.

Mr Wilkins told the court: “He put it to her neck and both punched and bit her on the left side of her face.

“As she pulled her face away he bit her on her left hand.”

The court heard how West stayed at the house for a period of time where he “threatened to kill her” before she was able to leave the house the following morning.

She suffered swelling to her cheek and a bite mark to her left hand and left ring finger in the attack.

The court heard how there was a “history of violence” in their relationship and probation services feared she was at risk of “physical and psychological harm” from West.

He admitted causing actual bodily harm and making threats to kill.

Yesterday West, now 29, of Warren Avenue, Southampton, was jailed at Winchester Crown Court after being found guilty of rape and causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

Bournemouth Echo:

Jurors heard his victim, a total stranger, was walking to work through the Lower Gardens early on November 13 when she was attacked from behind by West.

The woman, a 40-year-old cleaner, told police she thought she was going to die during the vicious attack, which took place at around 5am.

She was found with horrific injuries by a colleague who had gone out to look for her because she had not turned up for work and could not be contacted by phone.

Prosecutor Robert Bryan told the jury that Dorset Police received a 999 call at 6.11am reporting that the woman had been “badly injured”.

He said: “The person who had been attacked was naked, badly injured and semi-conscious, she had been violently, physically assaulted and had been raped.”

She suffered bruising and cuts to her face with injuries to her jaw and a fractured eye socket.

He added: “She was groaning in pain but apart from that couldn’t communicate with anyone.”