A man who used his dog 'as a weapon' has been spared jail.

Robert Crocombe, of Bro Awelon in Penycae, appeared before a judge at Mold Crown Court after admitting to causing injury with a dog dangerously out of control.

The prosecution, Richard Edwards, told the court how Phillip Jones was with friends when Crocombe, 36, took his seven-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier out on the evening of June 5 last year.

Crocombe, who was believed to be under the influence of drink and drugs, is said to have turned up at Jones' home address and was described as 'kicking off' in a phone call between Jones and his partner.

Mr Jones went to the address to 'act as a witness should anything happen', the court was told.

Upon arrival, Crocombe was said to be entering the home and had his dog with him.

It was at this point, the prosecution says, when Crocombe ordered his dog to 'get him' and directed the animal towards another person who had come to witness what was unfolding at the property.

Mr Jones is said to have stepped in the path of the dog and became the victim of his attack.

The hearing was told how the bull terrier bit him on the forearm after being 'riled up' by Crocombe, as well as on his hands.

Mr Jones was eventually able to wrestle free and 'pin' the dog to the floor, stopping the attack from progressing.

Mr Edwards says that during this attack, Crocombe simply stood on and watched.

Mr Jones was taken to A&E to receive treatment, the court was told, and had to be admitted to hospital due to the severity of his injuries.

Crocombe was arrested later on, and the court was told it was 'clear' he had taken alcohol at that point due to being 'unsteady on his feet' as well as slurred speech.

He denied encouraging the dog and said it had 'just gotten out' when the incident occurred.

John Wyn Williams, defending, said that in the period which Crocombe has owned the dog there have been no incidents of this nature.

About his addictions, Mr Williams told the judge that Crocombe has been working hard to tackle them on his own and added he is a realistic candidate to become rehabilitated within the community.

Judge Rhys Rowlands branded Crocombe 'not fit and proper' when it comes to owning a dog before passing sentence.

Crocombe narrowly avoided a jail term after receiving a 20 month sentence suspended by two years.

Judge Rowlands said: "Heavily under the influence of alcohol, and quite probably Class A drugs, you used your dog as a weapon to resolve a dispute.

"You held a grudge against a person and in your inebriated condition you went to see that person intent on a confrontation."

The judge says that Crocombe had the "opportunity to withdraw" but instead launched his dog in for an attack.

Judge Rowlands adds: "You antagonised your dog shouting words to the effect of 'get him'."

The judge expressed disbelief at how Crocombe stood on and watched as his dog left a man bitten and covered in blood.

He said: "You witnessed that, but did nothing. You did not step in or help. You chose to leave him there struggling and bleeding."

Alongside his sentence, Crocombe has also banned from keeping dogs for a total of five years.

The seven-year-old dog was spared from being put down but must always be leashed and muzzled when in public and it cannot be kept by Crocombe anymore.