A toddler was left screaming “No daddy, no” as its mother was threatened with a knife and her estranged partner and threatened to burn down their home.
The two-year-old, together with a three-year-old sibling, was in the room when Jamie Lee Nuttall threatened to kill their mother while brandishing a kitchen knife.
York Crown Court heard that the 25-year-old also grabbed a can of deodorant and began spraying the contents, while holding an unlit lighter and threatening to start a fire.
Jailing Nuttall, of North Marine Road, Scarborough, for a total of two-and-a-half years, The Recorder of York, Judge Stephen Ashurst, told him he had displayed “deeply unpleasant behaviour”.
He added: ”This was a serious incident and I have no doubt that your former partner was very scared for her welfare, but I suspect rather more concerned about threats being made to the children.
“It is an aggravating factor that the children were witness to what happened.”
The judge said he considered that Nuttall presents a risk to women to who he may form relationships with in the future.
He added that a lengthy custodial sentence needed to be imposed to allow the authorities time to work with him to reverse this.
Nuttall was under a restraining order at the time to stay away from his ex-partner after a previous incident, but with her agreement had spent the night on her sofa so he could be with his children.
However, said Nick Adlington, prosecuting, the following morning, on March 26, this year, an argument started between the pair about £30 he owed her.
Nuttall appeared before the court yesterday, having previously pleaded guilty to making a threat to kill, breaching the restraining order, common assault, threatening to damage property and two charges of causing damage.
The court heard that during the argument Nuttall damaged a £140 set of hair straighteners and a kitchen worktop.
Mitigating, Charles Blatchford told the court that his client realised he faced a custodial sentence.
He added that the events had shown his client that it was now time for him to grow up and change his ways, realising that he had not been a very good example to his two young children.
Nuttall was also placed under a new indefinite restraining order to have no contact with his ex, except to arrange access to the children, and not to enter her home in Scarborough.
The court heard that the breach of the original order had been the second by Nuttall, who has a criminal record of 12 convictions for 18 offences, including some for domestic violence.
Detective Constable Vicki Millington, of North Yorkshire Police’s Protecting Vulnerable Persons Unit, said: “This was a horrific incident which could have escalated into tragedy with Nuttall using shocking violence in front of very young children - which no child should have to witness.
“I’m satisfied that justice has been carried out for the victim, to who I would like to pay tribute to for her bravery in coming forward and providing the evidence needed to take Nuttall to court. Nuttall admitted the offences which at least saved the victim from the ordeal of having to give evidence in court.
“I hope this outcome gives other victims of domestic violence the confidence to come forward. I would also like thank all the agencies involved in supporting the victim and her family.
“Anyone who is a victim of domestic violence should not hesitate to call the police on 101, or 999 in an emergency.”