Nelson knife threats man is jailed

A VIOLENT yob who threatened a man with a knife in a terrifying confrontation on a garage forecourt and also attacked his then partner has been jailed for two years and 13 weeks.

Burnley Crown Court heard how Wesley Hall, who was in breach of a suspended jail term for assaulting a man, targeted vulnerable victims.

He offended on bail, was foul-mouthed, aggressive and racially insulting to a cabbie and there was "a history" of police being called by his former partner during their relationship.

Hall, who has almost 50 previous convictions, admitted racially aggravated criminal damage, possessing cannabis, battery, threatening or abusive words or behaviour, possessing a bladed article and had been committed for sentence by magistrates after being convicted of common assault.

Judge Heather Lloyd told the defendant (27), of Buccleuch Road, Nelson: "Despite the fact you have served custodial sentences, this unfortunately has not reduced your predilection to aggressive or violent behaviour."

The judge also imposed a restraining order, banning Hall from having contact with Denise Heath or entering Philips Lane, Colne.

Miss Alex Simmonds (prosecuting) said, last July, a man and his fiancee were at a petrol station when the man approached the defendant to talk to him about a fall-out with his fiancee. Hall was abusive and got out of the vehicle, brandishing a knife.

He was jabbing the blade at the victim and told him: "I will cut you and I will smash your face with a hammer."

Miss Simmonds said police were called and the defendant was later arrested. He alleged the victim had threatened him.

Last April Miss Heath, who was Hall's partner at the time and would say he was possessive and jealous, was in bed when he turned up at her home.

Miss Simmonds said when the defendant complained of toothache, she suggested whisky, he wanted to know where the whisky had come from and got angry. She said there had been a party, Hall asked which men had been there and threatened to smash her nose. The defendant grabbed the victim's jaw, twisted her head back and spat in her face.

Mr Martin Hackett (for Hall) said he accepted the court had no alternative but to send him to custody.

The defendant was in his second year of an Open University course and was hoping to go into business as a web designer. In the past he had organised local charity events.

The barrister added: "He has offended in a disgraceful way, but not in a way which is of a particularly high level."