MICHAEL Phearce McCann was brandishing a hammer when he confronted his girlfriend as she returned to their home with another man, a court was told.

Blackburn magistrates heard that Sinead Martin thought McCann had been arrested earlier in the evening but he was waiting when she got home in the early hours.

The court heard that McCann punched his partner and kicked her after knocking her to the floor and when she tried to phone the police he ripped the wire out of the wall.

McCann, 26, formerly of Swann Street, Darwen, but now of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to assaulting Miss Martin causing actual bodily harm and was sent to prison for 90 days.

Emma Kehoe, prosecuting, said on the day of the offence the couple had a minor disagreement. That night Miss Martin went out with friends and during the night McCann came looking for her.

"He found her in a pub sitting with two male friends," said Miss Kehoe.

"McCann followed her into the toilets and pushed her against a wall. She locked herself in a cubicle before eventually managing to escape and go to another establishment.

"When she returned home with a male friend they were confronted by McCann wielding a hammer," said Mrs Kehoe. "

Richard Prew, defending, said: "This is his first offence of violence and he bitterly regrets what he did to Miss Martin that night." said Mr Prew.