A thug who beat up his pregnant girlfriend twice has been given a reduced sentence after a judge decided she was also to blame.

Judge Jeremy Roberts told Liam Richardson, 22, from West Croydon that he held Lia Thompson equally responsible for their “difficult relationship”.

He sentenced him to 18 months in prison instead of a possible 30 months at the Old Bailey on Thursday.

A jury heard Richardson first beat up Miss Thompson, 31, at her home in Brixton in front of her 13-year-old son, tearing off her dress and hitting her repeatedly in the face and threatening to kill her and her son. She fled naked to seek help from a neighbour but told police she would not cooperate with them because she wanted her relationship to work.

Three months later in May, he attacked the pregnant mother in a jealous rage at a hotel in Clapham. The court heard he straddled her, punching her so hard he fractured her eye socket. She managed to escape, again fleeing naked down the fire escape, to beg for help at the reception.

Richardson pleaded guilty to actual bodily harm and grievous bodily harm.

Judge Roberts said: “This was clearly a difficult relationship and I am sure that not all the rights were on one side and all the wrongs on the other side.”

He also said Richardson, who lives in Rectory Grove, had shown “real remorse” and “increasing signs of maturity”.

Miss Thompson is in hospital preparing to give birth to Richardson’s baby and did not know her ex-boyfriend was being sentenced.

The judge decided not the give Miss Thompson the opportunity to write an impact statement saying how the attacks had affected her.

Richardson could be out of prison in six months given the time he has spent in jail on remand.

The court heard he has previous convictions for fighting outside pubs and was sentenced to 12 months in prison for one of these fights.

There is a restraining order preventing him from contacting Miss Thompson but he will be able to see his baby through a third party.