A LANDSCAPE gardener was caught with a knife during a fracas outside Newport Police Station.

Joshua Freeley was with two other men — one of whom he punched in the face, the other wielding a baseball bat.

He admitted possessing a bladed article in a public place and assaulting Neville Brown by beating, in Newport High Street, during the early hours of August 17, when he appeared at the Isle of Wight Magistrates' Court.

Police were on the scene in seconds after a fight broke out outside the police station, the court heard.

Officers saw a man with a baseball bat on the other side of the High Street and was arrested.

Freeley, of Mill Hill Road, Cowes, was simultaneously resisting arrest and had to be taken to the ground and was handcuffed.

A search revealed he had a knife hidden in his sock, said Liz Miller, prosecuting.

Read: Men fought outside police station armed with knife and baseball bat

Police then learned the former dairy farmer, with no previous convictions, had punched Mr Brown in the face, which caused swelling.

Freeley told police he knew he should not have been carrying his 'work' knife and admitted the assault.

The 25-year-old had been in the Man in the Moon pub, Newport, that evening and struck up a friendly conversation with Mr Brown, which led to him being invited back to his flat.

Another man, who was staying at the address, was also there.

As the evening went on, a row broke out, which resulted in Freeley fleeing the address, with Mr Brown and the other man, wielding a baseball bat, chasing him down the street.

Freeley claimed the two men "became aggressive out of nowhere", which they disputed, counter-claiming Freeley had pulled out the knife and threatened to stab them.

For Freeley, Oscar Vincent said his client had not brandished the knife.

He said Freeley was affected by the breakdown of a six-year relationship and found his job as a dairy farmer "harrowing and stressful" because of the practices used, such as the shooting of unwanted calves.

He was handed a four-month jail term, suspended for a year.

He must attend 15 rehabilitation sessions and was also ordered to pay £85 costs and a £28 victim surcharge.