A district judge has condemned a man who fed his three children chocolate brownies laced with magic mushrooms.

Blackburn magistrates heard the children’s mother described them as going “loopy” and “bouncing of wall” after ingesting the hallucinogenic drug.

The children, aged 14, 12 and 9 were eventually taken to hospital where they were detained until they came down from the involuntary drug use.

The court was told urine tests showed the children also had traces of cannabis in their systems which was the result of passive smoking in the home.

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, pleaded guilty to three charges of child neglect, which occurred in Burnley.

He was sentenced to four months in prison suspended for two years and ordered to complete 25 days rehabilitation activity requirement and 150 hours unpaid work.

He was also ordered to pay £85 costs and a £114 victim surcharge.

Passing sentence, District Judge Alexandra Preston said the defendant’s behaviour “beggared belief.”

“On that evening you gave your children chocolate brownies laced with a Class A hallucinogenic drug,” said District Judge Preston.

“You didn’t tell them or your partner what you were giving them but she quickly noticed the change in their behaviour.”

She said the defendant had been the worse for drink and drugs on the night of the incident.

“You are their father but you showed not a shred of concern for their wellbeing or safety,” she said.

“You told the Probation Service you just didn’t think. I don’t accept you did it unthinkingly. I am satisfied you did it entirely deliberately.

“Drug use was so freely conducted by you in that house that the children had cannabis in their systems from passive smoking,” added District Judge Preston.

“I am only just persuaded to suspend the period of imprisonment.”

Graeme Tindall, prosecuting, said the defendant and his partner had rowed when he admitted giving the children the cake. He left the house but returned later and the police were called.

David Lawson, defending, said his client had been drinking to excess and using cannabis and during his interview with police had struggled to recall the exact sequence of events.

“He has now sought to address his issues by making contact with Mind Matters,” said Mr Lawson. “He has not taken cannabis since the day of this incident.”