A MAN who hit two people over the head with a stick after a can of rice pudding was thrown at his dog has been jailed for 15 months.

Michael Glen McNicholas got into an argument with a man and woman after they told him to stop his Alsatian from barking, Teesside Crown Court Heard.

McNicholas, 33, of Wentworth Street, Middlesbrough, admitted assault occasioning actual bodily harm and unlawfully wounding.

Harry Hadfield, prosecuting, said the victims had stopped on Union Street in the Teesside town to divide bags of shopping on the evening of April 10 when they saw McNicholas, whose nickname is Snapper, and his dog.

Mr Hadfield said McNicholas asked the man for a tin of food, but when he refused, McNicholas struck him once over the head with a large stick knocking him to the ground and causing swelling and bruising.

McNicholas then struck the woman over the head splitting her scalp open, the court heard.

She needed eight staples in her head to fix the wound, Mr Hadfield said.

Peter Wishlade representing McNicholas, said his client had been throwing the stick for the Alsatian when the other man swore at him, told him to shut up the dog and then threw a can of rice pudding at the animal.

Mr Wishlade said an angry McNicholas retaliated by hitting the man with the stick, and then hit the woman because she spat at him.

The Recorder of York, Judge Stephen Ashurst jailed McNicholas, who has 43 convictions for 104 offences, for nine months for the ABH assault and 15 months for the wounding to be served concurrently.