A YOUNG man with Asperger’s Syndrome committed a crime because he was given inappropriate accommodation, his solicitor told York magistrates.

Cameron James McLean, 21, was being sentenced for assaulting a fellow resident of the Changing Lives hostel for the homeless on Union Terrace, central York.

His solicitor Tabitha Buck said the hostel's residents included some who had a history of abusing drugs or were violent.

Its services were geared towards them and not towards people such as McLean.

He had been diagnosed as having Aspergers Syndrome, needed medication to ensure he was in a "settled" frame of mind and had a low IQ.

“It is unusual to see someone with such significant learning difficulties and difficult clinical background within such a hostel”, she said.

McLean had complex support needs but there weren't the resources or funding for appropriate accommodation for him.

"As a result he has been placed in this environment that is not appropriate for him," she said. "He is in quite a stressful environment for someone of his background," she said. "It is asking a lot of him to be able to cope."

Aamir Sajad, prosecuting, said McLean kicked on the victim's door and shouted on October 31 after the two had argued earlier in the day.

Later that day McLean threw a mug at him. It broke and the victim suffered a cut to the side of his head.

Magistrates said they accepted that McLean was living in a place that was "not an easy place for him to be living in".

They gave him a 12-month conditional discharge and ordered him to pay a £21 statutory surcharge.

McLean pleaded guilty to assault.

Ms Buck said McLean had been living at the hostel for 11 months.