A FARMHAND who abused a group of young men in the street while holding a Stanley knife has been given a six month jail sentence, suspended for two years.

Luke Bowers, 28, confronted the complainants as they drove away from a football match being played at Northallerton leisure centre and threatened to cut one man's face.

Paul Reid, prosecuting at Teesside Crown Court, said Bowers was with his girlfriend and their rotweiller dog and was aggressive and shouting abuse during the confrontation in Forest Road, Northallerton.

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Mr Reid said one of the group grabbed a wheelbrace from the car in an effort to protect himself and it was that at point that Bowers left the scene.

He was later arrested by police and the knife recovered from his home.

Bowers, of Masham, near Ripon, North Yorkshire, was said to have a baby on with the way with his partner. His barrister Kieran Rainey said he would do anything to avoid custody so he could be at the birth.

Recorder Gateshill said Bowers, who admitted affray on July 24 last year, had a very bad criminal record with offences including violence and making a nuisance of himself in public.

However he said he had been impressed with a pre-sentence report on him and there seemed a realistic prospect that he had turned a corner.

As well as the suspended sentence, the judge said Bowers would be supervised by the probation service and attend sessions on a 'resolve' course in order to manage his behaviour.

Recorder Gateshill warned he would be jailed if he breached the court orders, adding: “Your future is in your own hands”.