PUNCHING a teenager in the face cost a Bishop Auckland man £135 in court.

Joshua Crowley, 20, of South Row, pleaded guilty to common assault when he appeared before Darlington Magistrates’ Court today (Thursday, February 21).

Crowley admitted that the assault also put him in breach of a community order being served for a previous offence.

The court heard that Crowley punched a 17-year-old boy outside a Co-op store in Barnard Castle on August 31, leaving him with a split lip and bruising to his gums.

Mitigating, Graham Hunsley said that Crowley believed the charge had been dropped considering it had happened in August last year, and that he had stayed out of trouble since then.

He said that Crowley believed the youth had been spreading untrue rumours about him so he went to confront him which led to the assault.

Magistrates gave Crowley a six month conditional discharge and ordered him to pay £50 compensation to the victim and £85 in court costs.