A man has been ordered to keep away from a neighbour for the next 5 years after he went to his home armed with a baseball bat.
Daniel Aldrich, 35, was angry after hearing that the man had shouted at his son. St Albans Crown Court heard that Aldrich was walking to his home in Farrington Avenue from the shop on Sunday, July 1 when he saw the man.
Prosecutor Isabel Delamare said: “The complainant saw Mr Aldrich and, fearing something was going to happen, held his lighter in his fist.
“The defendant said he thought the man had a knife. He went home, got out a baseball bat and hit the bins before walking to the neighbour’s address. There was shouting and swearing. The man went inside and the police were called.”
He was arrested and a baseball bat was recovered from the garden. In a police interview he said he thought the other man had a knife.
Aldrich pleaded guilty to possessing an offensive weapon and threatening behaviour. The court heard he had not been in trouble for 12 years.
Defending, Tara McCarthy said Aldrich, who is a carer for his son, had kept to his bail conditions not to contact the man for four months.
Judge Michael Kay QC told him: “It is plain there is a background of unpleasantness between you and your neighbour. “He thought he was going to be attacked and put a lighter in his fist. You thought it was a knife.
“You should have gone home and forgotten about it, but you started acting in an aggressive way. You were shouting and swearing. “I treat this is an isolated incident, but a nasty one. It was not only threatening to the person you were aiming at but to the public at large. You should not be acting like a headstrong teenager.”
The judge made a 12 month community order with an electronically-monitored curfew for 2 months between 10pm and 6am. He also made a restraining order for 5 years, banning him from contacting the man.