A milkman who pepper-sprayed his boss's son before smashing up a laptop and damaging several vehicles while 'literally foaming at the mouth' has avoided jail.

On May 15 last year, Ryan Foley, 28, who was working as a milkman for Robert Townson in Clitheroe, had launched a frenzied attack at Westby Hall Farm during a dispute over his wages.

Prosecuting, Charles Brown told Preston Crown Court how arrangements had been made to pay Foley his wage by dropping the money off at his mother's house.

Mr Brown said: "He was unhappy with that arrangement and driven by his mother, turned up at the farm demanding to be paid there and then.

"Present at the time were Robert Townson, Mr Townson's wife Janet, his son Robert Townson Junior, his daughter and a small child.

"Foley became agitated and produced a pepper spray which he discharged in Robert Jnr's face.

"He then caused damage to a vehicle, and smashed a laptop and threw it to the floor, before being restrained.

"He was described by several witnesses as literally foaming at the mouth.

"The police were called and he was arrested."

Anthony Parkinson, defending, told the court that Foley suffers with ADHD, which wasn't diagnosed until later in his life, and mitigated for a more lenient sentence due to the time it had taken to bring the case to court.

Judge Simon Medland QC said: "Your behaviour on the day we are dealing with when you went to the farm with the canister was completely unacceptable and must not happen again.

"You caused difficulty, fright, damage, interference and much trouble.

"The reasoning behind your behaviour was largely because of the illness you suffer from but, not entirely because of that.

"You must take responsibility for what you did, and in part there's a background of substance abuse here which has caused you in some way to behave as you did.

"Overall, your behaviour on that day was so serious that I must impose a prison sentence, but because of the mitigation and conditions of the pre-sentence report I am going to suspend that sentence."

Foley, of Albert Street, Church, Accrington, had previously pleaded guilty to possession of an offensive weapon, criminal damage and assault.

He was handed eight months and two weeks in prison, suspended for 18 months, ordered to undertake nine months of drug rehabilitation work as well as 30 days rehabilitation activity.