A WOMAN used her car “as a weapon” to deliberately drive into her cousin who was “squaring up” to fight her partner, amid a family feud, a court heard.

Patricia Poskett drove past cousin Michael Dinsley, who was walking towards a fish and chip shop in Clyde Terrace, Spennymoor, at 6.30pm on April 16.

Durham Crown Court heard that her partner shouted abuse from the car and challenged Mr Dinsley to a fight, to which he agreed.

Poskett dropped off her partner, and, as the two men “squared up”, she turned and drove back into Mr Dinsley.

He was thrown onto the bonnet and hit the windscreen, bleeding heavily.

Alex Burns, prosecuting, said Mr Dinsley, who has little memory of the incident, was taken to hospital suffering numerous cuts, abrasions, and bruises.

Mr Burns said due to the pain he suffered in one knee in the aftermath, Mr Dinsley had to give up work.

Police attended, although Poskett reported the incident herself, claiming she ran down her cousin after he ran in front of her car.

On the day of her recent scheduled trial the 38-year-old, of Front Street, in Croxdale, admitted dangerous driving and assault causing actual bodily harm.

Simon Perkins, mitigating said the incident was the culmination of the family feud, “getting out of control”, but was a spontaneous act rather than pre-meditated.

Judge Jonathan Carroll said she used the car “as a weapon” and was fortunate not to have caused more serious or even fatal injuries.

Jailing her for 16 months, he banned Poskett from driving for 26 months and made a restraining order, forbidding her from contacting or approaching her cousin, or his wife, for five years.