A SHOP manager who tussled with a thief said he was upset at the thought he could have been stabbed.

Blackburn magistrates heard his fears were heightened when his young son came to the store shortly after and asked why the police were at daddy's shop.

Mark Anthony Parry, 38, of Livesey Branch Road, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to stealing coffee and wine worth £96 belonging to the Co-op, Clayton-le-Moors. He was fined £80 with £30 victim surcharge and ordered to pay £100 compensation.

Alex Mann, prosecuting, said Lewis Taylor was serving a customer when he saw Parry walking out of the shop with a bag full of items he hadn't paid for.

He challenged him and there was a tussle before the bag broke and the items fell out.

"At that point he thought he was going to point a knife at him," said Mrs Mann.

"There was a full investigation and there was no confirmation that there was a knife."

Mrs Mann said Mr Taylor had been left shocked and frightened by what might have happened.

"When his son came in and asked why the police were in the shop it made him even more upset," said Mrs Mann.

Bern Leach, defending, said his client conceded there had been a tussle over the bag but there had been no physical contact.

He said there had been a problems with his client's benefits and his intention was to sell the goods to buy food for his family.