A 22-YEAR-OLD Colne man snatched his estranged partner’s mobile phone after she refused to give him money so he could carry on drinking.

Blackburn magistrates heard Neil John McConnell grabbed Jessica Cullen by the wrists to remove the phone and prosecutors had initially considered a charge of robbery.

McConnell, of White Grove, pleaded guilty to assaulting Jessica Cullen and theft of her mobile phone.

He was sentenced to 16 weeks in prison suspended for 12 months and made subject to a curfew between 6 pm and 6 am for 12 weeks. Colin Ingham, defending, said McConnell and Miss Cullen had been in an on-off relationship for five years.

Mr Ingham said: “His family have concerns about the way he has conducted his life and got into trouble as a result of binge drinking.”