A 24-year-old Gnowangerup man has been jailed after pleading guilty to a “cowardly” assault on his partner. Arron Joseph Verdun John Ward was sentenced at Katanning Magistrates Court on April 5 after he pleaded guilty to a charge of aggravated assault causing bodily harm. Police prosecutor David Loverock told the court Ward and his partner were walking through a carpark at Woolworths Katanning on Clive Street about 9.30am on February 8 when they exchanged words. While his partner was walking into the supermarket, Ward let go of their pram and attacked her, knocking her to the ground. He then continued attacking her while she was on the ground. Ward attended the local police station and appeared in the Katanning Magistrates Court on the day of the assault, where he was granted bail. Ward’s defence lawyer told the court his client had noticed they were starting to make a scene as they were arguing, so he asked his partner to take their children home, but she refused. The lawyer said Ward could not explain why he attacked his partner, but he had been struggling with his return to the community after a stint in prison. The couple had been in a relationship for six years and had three children together under the age of five. Ward’s defence lawyer told the court he wanted to apologise to the victim and he recognised the incident would have been “very frightening”. Magistrate Dianne Scadden noted the seriousness of the assault. “None of the circumstances justify your actions,” she said. “It was in broad daylight . . . (and) you were prepared to act that way in public, with other people around.” Ms Scadden criticised him for continuing to attack the woman while she was on the ground. “It is cowardly,” she said. He was sentenced to eight months in prison.