A CLEATOR Moor man has been given a suspended jail sentence for what magistrates said was a "serious" public order offence involving threatening behaviour.

Robert Thomas Ryan, 39, of Ennerdale Road, committed the offence in Whitehaven on December 21, Workington Magistrates' Court heard. He pleaded guilty.

Outlining their reasons for sentence, magistrates said jail was justified because the offence had been "prolonged" but they were prepared to suspend the ten week term they imposed because the defendant employed six people who would lose their income were he to be in prison.

They suspended the jail term for 18 months and ruled that Ryan must complete 20 activity days.

He must also pay a £128 victim surcharge and £85 costs.

Two of the ten weeks were imposed because Ryan was on a community order at the time for an harassment offence in June last year.