ARMED police surrounded a house after a man brandishing a knife threatened to kill an officer on Wednesday night.

The siege of the house in James Street, Easington Colliery, County Durham, lasted almost four hours before riot police stormed the premises and arrested a man in his 20s.

Police received an anonymous call at 11.30pm on Wednesday reporting a number of men fighting in James Street, with some brandishing knives.

When officers arrived, they were threatened and a small number of people retreated into the house.

The property was surrounded by armed police, dog handlers and a police negotiator was also at the scene.

Less than an hour later, and with a police helicopter hovering overhead, a number of people came out of the house.

A man aged 30 was arrested for criminal damage and possession of a controlled drug.

A second man and a woman, both 43, were arrested for affray and assaulting a police officer.

A man in his 20s remained in the house refusing police requests to come out.

After three hours, officers wearing riot gear stormed the premises and the man was arrested on suspicion of making threats to kill and affray.

The four people were yesterday being questioned at Peterlee police station.