A MAN shredded a mattress in a police cell while waiting to be interviewed, a court heard.

Barry Blakey, 24, of Brignall Moor Crescent, Darlington, destroyed the mattress after becoming frustrated at having to wait to be interviewed by police.

However the criminal damage offence he was arrested for was later dropped, Darlington Magistrates' Court heard.

Ben Pegman, mitigating, said Blakey was arrested at 2am on December 23  and put in a police cell until he was interviewed by officers at 10am.

He added: “It was the Christmas weekend; he was extremely frustrated at being in police custody. He said: ‘I have done nothing wrong to justify being here.’”

Blakey, who has previous convictions for similar offences, admitted criminal damage.

Chairman of the bench, Susan Hannan, said: “If you just behaved yourself and bided your time you wouldn’t have to be here. Damaging is not the answer so perhaps think next time.”

Magistrates gave him a conditional discharge for six months and ordered him to pay £50 compensation and £15 victim surcharge.