A YOUNG man who threatened to rape and stab a support worker in the eye with a screwdriver has been given two years' youth custody.

Victim Eloise Cochrane, 23, was left “petrified” after being pinned up against a fridge by Alexander Evans at lodgings in Oswaldtwistle, Burnley Crown Court was told.

Brandishing the tool before snatching her iPhone, the 20-year-old told her: “I have no issue with putting this through your eye.”

Defence counsel Mark Stephenson said Evans, who suffers from cerebral palsy and severe epilepsy, as well as having learning difficulties, had a functioning age of a young teenager.

But Judge Sara Dodd ruled that Evans, could be considered a dangerous offender, based on an assessment by the probation service.

“You are an incredibly volatile young man and there have been concerns about your aggression for some time,” said Judge Dodd.

“You have been expelled from college because of it, you have been evicted from your accommodation and in combination with you taking cannabis this is a toxic mix.”

Evans, of Commercial Street, Oswaldtwistle, had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to robbing Miss Cochrane of a black iPhone, a charger and cigarettes.

Stephen Parker, prosecuting, said Miss Cochrane, who also provided home care for Evans, had turned up at the supported lodgings of Mac McNally in Sun Street, Oswaldtwistle.

Evans and Mr McNally were not supposed to associate with each other, as they were known to cause trouble together, which concerned the support worker.

Mr Parker said Miss Cochrane asked Evans to leave but he became aggressive and told her: “Don’t mess with me little girl.”

The court was told he reached into her coat pocket and grabbed her cigarettes, which she allowed him to do as she thought this might calm him down.

But Mr Parker said he followed her into the kitchen and produced a screwdriver, before threatening to stab her in the eye and rape her.

She eventually fled from the house and alerted a passerby, who rang the police, leading to Evans’ arrest.

Mr Stephenson, defending, said Evans could be treated by the Langley House Trust, a specialist rehab unit in Edenfield.

He had been bullied and abused while at Preston Prison, he added.