AN ex-engineer who smashed his friend's leg in a vicious baseball bat attack, has been jailed for 16 months.

Steven Kenyon, 35, had set about John Dagg, his drinking partner, with the metal bat after accusing him of stealing cash while the pair were in Kenyon's flat.

Kenyon had had alcohol and a blue tablet but had no idea what it was.

He had hit the victim repeatedly as Mr Dagg pleaded with him to stop, leaving him in agony from a compound fracture to his left leg and a gash which had blood pouring from it.

Mr Dagg needed surgery and it was several months before he could walk properly.

Burnley Crown Court heard how how when paramedics arrived at the defendant's home — after Kenyon apparently rang for an ambulance — they found Mr Dagg at the foot of the stairs and Kenyon at the top.

They were told the victim had fallen down the stairs, but then the defendant said: “Should I just tell the truth? I hit him with a baseball bat."

When the crew looked shocked, the defendant turned to them and said: “Don’t you look at me like that.

“If you carry on like that, I will bat you as well."

The hearing was told Mr Dagg had also suffered bruises to his arm and other leg.

Police arrived and took Kenyon to the police station.

He was very drunk, couldn’t really recall what had gone on, but didn't believe he had caused the injuries.

Prosecutor Stephen Parker continued: “He said sometimes he flips out when he has drink, but didn't think he had on this occasion.”

Jobless Kenyon, of Crabtree Avenue, Waterfoot, had amitted inflicting grievous bodily harm last June 22.

Mr Parker said Mr Dagg was sitting on the settee when Kenyon swung the bat towards his head. He put up his arms to defend himself, the defendant went to hit him again, Mr Dagg pulled up his legs in front of him and was struck across the right leg.

The victim tried to get up, Kenyon hit his left leg twice and Mr Dagg could feel the bone coming out of his shin.

“He tried to stand up, couldn't because of the pain and couldn’t even crawl out as he was in such agony.

“The defendant was arrested, taken to the police station and questioned.

“He had previous convictions for battery and possessing a bladed article.

Mark Stuart, defending Kenyon, said: “He's mortified he’s done this to a really good friend.”

Judge Andrew Woolman said he believed Kenyon was remorseful and he had clearly been suffering from depression.