TWO men who were among a group of 15 fighting in the centre of Harrogate,were warned by a judge yesterday to prepare for a possible jail sentence.

Steven Thomas, 18, of Church Road, and Daniel Joseph Rix, 23, of Central Avenue, both Billingham, each pleaded guilty at Harrogate Magistrates' Court to using threatening behaviour.

Thomas also admitted assault on a police officer and Rix pleaded guilty to breach of a conditional discharge.

Simon Ostler, prosecuting, said it had been a busy early evening period, with many families on the streets of the North Yorkshire town centre when violence erupted in the Oxford Street pedestrian precinct at about 7.25pm, on Friday, August 13, last year.

Witnesses, including a paramedic whose ambulance was parked nearby, described the scene - captured on closed circuit television cameras - as one of mayhem as up to 15 men fought with each other.

An off-duty police officer and his two sons, one of whom is a soldier, had intervened in a bid to end the brawl.

Police reinforcements arrived to find Rix, a hotel waiter, being restrained by their off-duty colleague.

Thomas was pinned to the floor by a member of the public.

Mr Ostler said the incident had not ended in the town centre. Thomas, although injured, continued to be violent at the police station and spat at Inspector John Greveson.

District Judge Roy Anderson said Rix was in breach of a conditional discharge for offences, that included assault on a British Transport Police officer at Darlington railway station.

Both men were bailed until March 23 and were warned that all options, including custody, would be considered.