A drug addict who demanded family members buy him drugs and alcohol while wielding a machete has been jailed for 15 months.

Darren Guthrie, aged 32, was sentenced at St Albans Crown Court on March 12 after admitting numerous offences.

The court heard that on February 2, Guthrie wielded a machete and damaged property during a drunken rampage he left friends and family in fear.

At the home address in Long Elms, he demanded one relative buy him alcohol. When they refused he became very aggressive until they gave in. A second family member who was sleeping upstairs then woke to find Guthrie hacking at a banister with a machete. They were so scared that they locked themselves in a room.

Later Guthrie again made demands on the first family member, this time for money and a lift so he could buy drugs.

Later he persuaded a family friend to give him another lift. Whilst in the vehicle, Guthrie again became aggressive and eventually damaged the passenger window.

Guthrie was reported to police and was arrested after finding him hiding in the loft at home.

Once inside a police car, Guthrie began kicking at the vehicle door. He had to be restrained by officers during which he assaulted a female police officer.

A machete was later seized from the home of Guthrie’s friend.

Guthrie pleaded guilty to two counts of criminal damage, damaging property of unknown value, possession of a bladed/sharp pointed article and assaulting a police officer.

Guthrie was also given a restraining order which forbids him to attend or enter the victims’ address.

Detective Constable Rob King, from the Three Rivers Local Crime Unit, said: “Guthrie had no qualms about using a machete to terrorise his family.

“He is clearly a dangerous individual and I hope it reassures his victims and the wider community to know that he is no longer on the streets.

“I hope this serves as a warning to those who choose to arm themselves with knives – we will arrest you and you will likely face a custodial sentence.”