A work Christmas party took a violent turn when a male chef choked a female bar manager until she passed out, leaving her permanently unable to smile.
CCTV footage of the disturbing incident, which occurred last December during a party attended held for staff of The Cameo Club in Cardiff, Wales, has since gone viral.
In the clip, Nathan Webb can be seen grabbing Molly Phillips, 23, into a headlock.
The young woman briefly struggles before her arms go stiff and she slumps into her attacker’s arms, seemingly unconscious.
After he releases her, she falls to the floor and hits her head before colleagues rush to her aid.
Ms Phillips returned to work after the attack and was originally told her injuries would heal with time.
However, she has since learnt she is suffering from permanent facial paralysis and will never be able to smile properly again.
She has also developed post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and depression.
By the end of March this year, she was ”finding it hard to come into work and was crying both before and during shifts” and eventually felt forced to resign.
But this week an employment tribunal ruling has found Ms Phillips was unfairly dismissed, and that her bosses failed to properly investigate her claims regarding the assault.
According to Metro, Ms Phillips claimed her boss Jason Pearce even made jokes about the attack, telling Mr Webb, who had managed to keep his job despite being arrested over the vicious assault, that he heard he had been “choking girls lately”.
Meanwhile, a second bar director, Huw Davies, told the young woman to “get over it” as he couldn’t “wave a magic wand and fix everything”.
The tribunal also heard Ms Phillips’ injuries “were either caused by lack of oxygen or nerve damage”.
Judge Alison Frazer slammed the bar’s bosses for their treatment of the victim.
“I find that from April onwards Mr Davies acted in a way which was dismissive of the claimant’s feelings about the incident,” Metro reported her as saying.
“He told her to ‘get over it’ when referring to the Christmas party incident.”
The tribunal also heard of the toll the incident had taken on Ms Phillips.
“I’d worked there for two and half years and done everything to that place and it was just like, I realised I meant nothing to them and I was completely disposable,’ she said.
She also spoke about her distress at being physically unable to smile.
“People don’t notice it, but I notice it more than anything,” she said.
“If it’s still like that when I get married, I won’t be able to smile in my wedding photos … It’s not nice.”
She said her bosses had never inquired about her welfare or her recovery after the attack.
Speaking after the hearing, a spokeswoman for South Wales Police told Wales Online that a 33-year-old man had been arrested on suspicion of assault and is “currently released under investigation”.
Originally published as Shocking attack caught on film