A man who used his car as a weapon to ram into his partner's former boyfriend as he walked on the pavement has been jailed for eight months.

Dale Cunningham missed a 17-year-old schoolgirl by inches when he drove on to the pavement and deliberately struck Christopher Hainsworth.

Jailing him at Bradford Crown Court yesterday, Judge John Potter told Cunningham: "You made a decision which was extremely foolish and extremely dangerous. You decided to use that car as a weapon towards Mr Hainsworth."

Prosecutor Stephanie Hancock said the complainant and the defendant had never got on.

Just after 5pm, on April 4 this year, Mr Hainsworth was walking on the pavement in Reevy Road West, Buttershaw, Bradford, when Cunningham, 22, drove past in his Volkswagen Golf on his way home from work.

Miss Hancock said their eyes met and Cunningham did a U-turn in the road, got out of his car and shouted threats at the complainant. He then grabbed him by the throat and punched him four times to the side of the head. Mr Hainsworth tried to defend himself and run away up the road, but Cunningham followed him in his car, got out and confronted him again.

Mr Hainsworth tried to walk away across the road, but the defendant revved his car, drove on the wrong side of the road and mounted the pavement, narrowly missing the schoolgirl. He then drove straight at the complainant, who froze.

He struck him, at an estimated 20-25mph, on the knee, causing him to topple on to the front of the car and hit his back on the driver's window frame.

Miss Hancock said: "The complainant described how, when he was lying on the ground, he saw the back wheels skidding to a stop right in front of his face."

Mr Hainsworth was treated at hospital for lumps to his head, bruising, stiffness, and a fractured rib.

Cunningham, of Barden Avenue, Buttershaw, pleaded guilty to causing serious injury through dangerous driving and common assault.

His solicitor advocate, Arshad Mahmood, said the offence was not planned or premeditated. His client had acted stupidly in the heat of the moment.

Judge Potter told Cunningham there was a history of confrontation between his partner and Mr Hainsworth but it was no excuse for his behaviour. He said members of the public who witnessed it would have been alarmed and the schoolgirl would have been significantly affected.

Cunningham was banned from driving for two years.