A MAN who attacked a teenager with a hammer in a Brighouse park after he "looked at him in a funny way" has been spared jail.

Ryan Thomas-Rothery, 22, set about 18 year-old Ben Croft when the pair met in Wellholme Park on August 27 last year.

Prosecutor Nick Adlington told Bradford Crown Court that Mr Croft had been with a group of friends when Thomas-Rothery approached them and tried to make conversation.

He was said to have offered the group some MDMA, or ecstasy, and when they refused, the court heard that the defendant poured a bag of the drug into a can of lager before then drinking it.

Mr Adlington said Thomas-Rothery then started talking in a "strange manner", talking about killing people and burying them on the moors.

As the group continued to ignore him, Thomas-Rothery was said to have approached Mr Croft before hitting him repeatedly over the head with an eight-inch glass hammer.

Mr Adlington said the series of blows were delivered "with force", causing Mr Croft to suffer cuts and bruises that required hospital treatment.

Mr Croft described the attack as "coming out of the blue", and lasting for around 30 seconds.

Thomas-Rothery, of Langdale Street, Elland, admitted the assault to police on his arrest, saying he had been under the effects of drugs at the time.

He admitted charges of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and the possession of an offensive weapon.

Stephen Wood, mitigating, said his client had apologised to Mr Croft immediately after the attack and then again via an e-mail.

He said a psychological report into Thomas-Rothery had identified "serious concerns", with a recommended treatment programme of "mentalisation-based therapy."

Imposing a suspended jail term, Judge David Hatton QC told Thomas-Rothery he must engage with the probation service or face being sent to custody.

He said: "This was a particularly serious assault, entirely unprovoked, and in public in the presence of others.

"You struck him about the head. Happily, on the evidence I have seen, the effects were relatively short-lived."

Referencing the findings of the psychological report, he said: "You are a young man who has had, to say the least, a number of problems not of your own making for a large part of your life."

Thomas-Rothery was jailed for 16 months, suspended for two years, and ordered to complete a 30-day rehabilitation requirement encompassing the therapy offered by the probation service.