A man has been jailed after a shocking assault on a Kilwinning priest and a racist outburst in a shop.

Craig Duff, 27, pled guilty to a charge of assault and robbery, as well as racially aggravated harassment when he appeared before Kilmarnock Sheriff Court on Monday, May 14.

The Irvine man, currently residing in HMP Kilmarnock, admitted behaving in a racially aggravated manner likely to cause alarm or distress in Pennyburn Supermarket on January 23 after he repeatedly directed racist remarks towards a woman.

He also admitted assaulting a priest, stealing a set of keys and attempting to rob money from him at St Winin's church on the same date - after having asked the clergyman for food and shelter.

Having gained entry, he then seized the priest by the clothing, pinned him against a door and raised a clenched fist at him while demanding money.

He then seized a set of keys from his hand and followed the priest to his house where Duff repeatedly tried to gain entry to the property.

A not guilty plea to another charge was accepted by prosecutors.

Duff received eight months imprisonment for racially aggravated harassment and 32 months for the charge of assault and robbery. 

Both sentences will run concurrently and backdated from when he was remanded in custody on January 25.