Surgeons have failed to reattach a man’s finger after it was bitten off at a school nativity play.
Michael Dent, 32, was attacked as he and his former wife Christy, 31, were waiting to see their four-year-old daughter take to the stage with fellow nursery pupils.
Alleged attacker Lee Wilkinson, 39 – who had a relationship with Christy after the couple split – is said by other parents to have bitten off Mr Dent’s little finger before “spitting the blood out like an animal”.
The two men fought at Harton Primary School, in South Shields, South Tyneside, before the Christmas performance on Tuesday afternoon.
Mr Wilkinson was arrested on suspicion of assault and bailed by police on Wednesday. Mr Dent said he and Mr Wilkinson had been involved in a feud leading up to the alleged attack.
Speaking from his home in South Shields, Tyne and Wear, the father-of-three told The Sun: “I’ve lost the tip of my little finger on my left hand.
“I’ve had everyone on the phone asking me how I am.
“My head is just not in the right place at this time. I just want to get things sorted out.”
Mr Wilkinson said he was giving a statement to the police but had no comment to make about the brawl. One witness, who did not wish to be identified, told The Shields Gazette in South Tyneside: “The two men started to fight in front of all the mums and dads.
“One bit the finger off the other and spat the blood out like an animal.”
Another witness said teachers intervened to break up the fight.
A spokesman for the primary school said the incident was not witnessed by any of the children, who were preparing for the play in a different part of the school at the time.