Man had a pocket knife in his jeans

Court
Court

When police searched a 22-year-old man they found a pocket knife and a dumb bell nut which could be used as a knuckleduster in the pocket of his jeans.

And Jonathan Dean Gartland, Scarva Walk, Banbridge, told officers he had them for his own protection if he got into a fight.

He admitted two charges of having an offensive weapon on September 15 last year, a dumb bell locking nut used as a knuckleduster and a pocket knife.

Gartland was given 200 hours community service.

The court heard police saw the defendant walking on the Scarva road and when he saw them he started to change direction.

He was searched and the knuckleduster was found in his front pocket and he said it was for his own protection.

Gartland also had a knife which again he said was for his own protection.

He told police that he believed there were persons who were looking out for him and he needed these items if he got involved in a fight.

A barrister representing the defendant said the bolt was used to attach a weight to a dumb bell and Gartland accepted he should not have had it with him.

He explained that his client had been a victim of a serious assault a number of years ago which left him with screws in his left hip.

The lawyer added that the gravity of the assault left the defendant paranoid in terms of his safety in public.

He said there was no suggestion that he had used any of the items.

He wasn’t armed to go out and look for trouble.

The lawyer added that Gartland had now ceased using cannabis and had been referred to a mental health team.