Gang acted like 'pack of hyenas' in shovel attack on North Yorkshire man

Four men who attacked a man with shovels in Thirsk
Mark Farrow, John Thomas Hardy, Gary McDonald and Walter McDonald Credit: North Yorkshire Police

A gang who acted like a "pack of hyenas" when they attacked a man and smashed up a car containing his young children have been jailed.

The four men threatened to chop off their victim's hand in the incident, in Sowerby near Thirsk, North Yorkshire.

North Yorkshire Police said the victim’s van and car, which contained his wife and children, were also "smashed up".

Mark Farrow, 45, John Thomas Hardy, 46, Gary McDonald, 24, and Walter McDonald, 24, pleaded guilty to violent disorder and were jailed for a total of almost eight years.

They were also given restraining orders banning any contact with the victim for the next 15 years.

Police said the attack was targeted and followed a dispute.

Speaking after the hearing, Detective Constable Martin Willoughby said: "This was a horrific and deeply traumatic attack which left the victim with severe cuts and bruising to his body.

"His attackers were cowards, using weapons and ganging up on an unarmed man, beating him repeatedly in front of his wife and young children before turning their attentions to his wife and damaging her vehicle.

"I am satisfied that this investigation has resulted in custodial sentences, ensuring that our communities are safer when people like this are brought to justice and locked away."

Gary McDonald was jailed for 30 months; Walter McDonald for two years; and Mark Farrow and Thomas Hardy were both jailed for 20 months.