A MAN produced a knife after he was accused of being a car thief, a court heard.

Carl Durkin is alleged to held out the knife in a threatening fashion during a confrontation in Newgate Street, Bishop Auckland, in the early hours of December 12 last year.

Mr Durkin, 30, of Fore Bondgate, Bishop Auckland, admits possessing a knife, but denies a charge of affray and is on trial at Teesside Crown Court.

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Prosecuting, Ian West said the defendant was arrested by police and found in possession of a red-handled knife, which matched the description of the knife they had been given by a witness.

Mr Durkin conceded he had got into a scuffle with another man on Newgate Street, but hadn't produced the knife. He also claimed he had been assaulted.

Mr West explained to the jury how the charges arose from an earlier incident in which a Land Rover vehicle was broken into in Bishop Auckland and items stolen.

The trial continues.