A Northampton man has been spared jail after hitting his neighbour with a baseball bat "while defending his wife and family".
Marcin Toton, 38, was sentenced at Northampton Crown Court yesterday (May 22) after the scuffle outside his home in Water Pump Court, Thorplands.
The court heard how Toton and his neighbour had had incidents in the past and on this occasion it escalated into a fight.
But after hearing from the 38-year-old's friends and neighbours, the judge chose to spare Toton the minimum sentence of jail time for the attack.
In May 2016, Toton was in his house when he says he heard his wife arguing with the neighbour.
He responded by grabbing a baseball bat and heading out to "defend his family". He was met by the neighbour, his daughter and her partner.
Toton hit the neighbour with the bat on the arm several times before the daughter's partner got between them.
Prosecutor Victoria rose QC told the court: "It was then an unknown male approached Toton, took the bat off him and left the area."
When police arrived to arrest Toton, they found him outside his home "shouting and being abusive".
He pleaded guilty to possessing an offensive weapon and affray, which comes with a minimum sentence of two months in jail.
But the court heard how many of Toton's friends and family had come out to support him with good character references, which swayed the judge's decision on whether to send him to prison.
His Honour Judge Rupert Mayo said: "This offence took place two years ago and you are already working hard to support your family.
"I have taken the decision not to send you to prison... If you are stupid enough to ever arm yourself with any form of weapon you will have the minimum sentence of two months to serve.
"I hope you don't come back here again."
Instead, Toton was fined a total of £2,150 in costs.
Since the case, Toton is no linger neighbours with the family in the case.