A TENANT’S heavy drinking combined with mental health issues proved “explosive”, a court heard.

Daniel Cairns previously caused damage to the property, in Jack Lawson Terrace, Wheatley Hill, prior to the incident leading to his court appearance.

Durham Crown Court, sitting at Newcastle, was told that after being spoken to, about those past outbursts, he was allowed to retain the tenancy.

But, on February 24, the landlord was informed by neighbours of an ongoing incident at the property and reported it to police.

Sam Faulks, prosecuting, said officers went to the address with the intention of speaking to Cairns, who was shouting and smashing household items.

They were met with a torrent of abuse by the defendant, who smashed a first-floor window and began throwing items from it, onto the street below, to the shock of nearby residents.

Mr Faulks said Cairns barricaded himself into the property and, “something of a siege situation developed”.

It was only after the arrival of firefighters that police were able to access the house and confront the defendant, who was tasered to bring him under control.

The owner attended to assess the carnage and said the incident would “significantly impact” on his business, as many household items, most belonging to his mother, were damaged or destroyed.

Mr Faulks said the estimated damage caused was put at between £13,500 and £25,000.

Cairns, 33, who admitted affray and criminal damage, has remained in custody since the incident.

The court heard his record includes convictions for causing damage in the last three years.

Lewis Kerr, for Cairns, said: “This incident arises from a background of mental health issues, combined with the heavy use of alcohol, binge drinking.”

Mr Kerr said Cairns was literally, “screaming for help”, in what appears to have been something of a breakdown.

He urged Judge James Adkin to adjourn sentence to enable Cairns to seek help to address his issues in the community.

But, Judge Adkin said given the scale of the damage, “almost completely destroying the interior”, to the great consternation of neighbours and the landlord, it had to be an immediate prison sentence of one year.

He also made Cairns the subject of a three-year restraining order prohibiting him from approaching or contacting his former landlord or the landlord’s mother.