A THUG held a woman down on a bed in front of a seven-year-old child as she desperately tried to call police.

Vijahat Ishfaq was found by police hiding in a cupboard of a Southend property after they were told he had assaulted a woman.

The incident took place on May 29 this year, and the 24-year-old appeared at Southend Magistrates Court yesterday.

The court was told that Ishfaq had been shouting in the presence of the woman and a seven-year-old boy and was hitting himself when he became angry.

He then followed the woman to another room where she attempted to call police, but he forced her down onto a bed and tried to take her phone from her, scratching her wrists in the process, all of which was witnessed by the seven-year-old.

The woman managed to break free and fled the house with the boy.

Simon Samuels, mitigating for Ishfaq, told the court that the behaviour had been the result of him being addicted to cocaine but he was now free of it.

Ishfaq admitted assault and was handed a 12-month community order and 120 hours unpaid work.

He must also pay £105 in costs.