A teenager who punched a man during a melee has been sentenced to community service and probation.

Callum Hill of Marathon Avenue in Douglas admitted common assault after a row over text messages escalated into an early hours brawl.

Prosecuting advocate Barry Swain told the court that 18-year-old Hill was at Bank Hill in Douglas on January 21, at 12.15am.

He was with a number of other people and they approached another man.

A row started and during a melee, Hill jumped on the man’s back, and then put him in a headlock with one arm as he punched him with the other.

The man broke free and took refuge in The Copper Still bar nearby.

Hill was later arrested and told police: ‘I only hit him once.’

He was taken to police headquarters and during an interview, answered ‘no comment’ to all questions.

The court heard that he has no previous convictions.

Hill later said that the incident had been sparked by text messages between parties.

A probation report said that Hill had said that there had initially been an argument between the complainant and one of his friends, with them both pushing each other. Hill admitted that he had then joined in, jumping on the man’s back, putting him in a headlock and punching him once.

The report said that the teenager had mental health issues and was currently unemployed, but was not claiming benefits, so had no income to pay any fine.

Defence advocate David Clegg said that his client was willing to do community service as it would give him a purpose and get him out of the house.

Deputy High Bailiff Rachael Braidwood ordered the teenager to do 80 hours’ unpaid work in the next 12 months.

He must also pay £125 prosecution costs at a rate of £5 per week.