An “extremely troubled” man with a kitchen knife who wandered uninvited into a New Year’s Eve party was spared jail.

Depressed Anthony Lamb started drinking heavily as a result of not being able to see his two children and their mother.

Liverpool Crown Court heard the 27-year-old then armed himself with a knife and went out intending to kill himself.

Police were called after he entered Emma Curran’s house in Brougham Road, Wallasey some time after 1.15am.

Christopher Taylor, prosecuting, said Lamb produced the 12-inch knife when asked to leave.

He said: “He began waving the knife around and demanding a cigarette.”

Ms Curran was concerned for her guests’ safety and ushered them outside, as she tried to calm Lamb down.

One of them gave him a cigarette and he handed the knife over to Ms Curran before leaving.

She told police: “While I was scared by the whole experience, I would rather he went somewhere he could get help than court.”

Lamb went to Seacombe Promenade, where he shouted and swore at officers before trying to get away.

Mr Taylor said he had to be taken to the ground and was “kicking out in all directions”.

Lamb kicked one policeman in the side of his head, but the officer did not sustain any injuries.

He admitted possessing a knife in a public place, on the basis he only intended to cause himself harm, but accepted it would have frightened others.

Anthony Lamb, 27, of Luke Street in Seacombe, admitted possession of a knife in a public place and assaulting a police constable

Lamb, of Luke Street, Seacombe, who has 15 previous convictions for 28 offences, also admitted assaulting a police constable.

His criminal record includes assaults, criminal damage, aggravated vehicle taking and affray, but nothing knife-related.

Helen Richardson, defending, said the dad-of-two was “extremely troubled”, but seeking help from Inclusion Matters Wirral.

She said: “It certainly was not and never had been his intention to alarm or hurt anybody with that knife, other than himself.

“That really is the sad and tragic reality.”

Ms Richardson said Lamb was adopted as a baby, along with his sister, but spent his teens in care homes.

She said: “Sadly at the age of 12 because of difficulties in his behaviour, his adoptive parents made the decision to give him up.”

The lawyer said Lamb had not had any contact with them or his sister since and many of his crimes were committed in care homes.

She said he suffered from depression and was prescribed medication, but felt he was recovering and stopped taking it in September.

Lamb described being “totally out of his mind” and feeling “so like he had nothing to live for that he fully intended to take his own life”.

Ms Richardson said Lamb was expecting a third child with his new girlfriend, which was “a trigger for him wanting to get his mental health problems under control”.

Judge Elizabeth Nicholls said there were “exceptional circumstances” in Lamb’s case, which meant he did not have to go to prison.

She handed him a three-year community order and a rehabilitation activity requirement of up to 40 months.