A MAN with previous convictions for slashing tyres was found with a knife after acting ‘suspiciously’ in a car park, a court heard.
Edward Kinsella was found with a locking Stanley knife after members of the public contacted police when they saw him at Kendal’s South Lakeland Retail Park, off Appleby Road, a court was told.
The 62-year-old admitted possessing a blade in public when he appeared before South Cumbria Magistrates’ Court.
A judge chose not to send Kinsella to prison after hearing that was in the advanced stages of a cancer and would be receiving palliative care.
Peter Bardsley told the court the incident happened around 2.30pm on October 5.
He said: “Police officers received information that a male was acting suspiciously around cars in the South Lakeland Retail Park.
“Police asked if he had anything he shouldn’t have and he said ‘yes I’ve got a knife in my pocket.
“He then told the officer he had used the knife for DIY a couple of days earlier.
“He said he had gone shopping on his bicycle and his chain came off.
“He was trying to find a bike stand to fix it.
“He said he used the knife a couple of days earlier to help a neighbour cut some kitchen cabinets.”
The court heard Kinsella had a number of previous convictions for criminal damage.
Last year he was jailed for 28 weeks for contempt of court after he was abusive towards a court official and failed to adequately apologise.
Magistrates said they opted for the jail sentence because he had sworn at the official and used racist language.
In 2017 he was jailed for five months after he admitted three charges related to tyre slashing and 10 counts of shoplifting.
It came after a number of tyre slashing incidents were reported to police.
In mitigation, solicitor Michael Graham told the court: “The matter dates back seven months and the defendant was fully cooperative with the police when they spoke to him.
“He offered up the fact he had the knife in his possession.
“He says that he had been doing something at a neighbour’s property, placed it in his pocket and forgot about it.
“He tells me he is in the advanced stages of prostate cancer.
“The starting point for this offence is six months’ imprisonment.
“You were acting rather suspiciously and I note you have a number of convictions for criminal damage, so the offence definitely crosses the threshold for custody.
“I will suspend this because we have heard about your medical issues and it’s for the reason alone.”
The judge sentenced Kinsella to four months in prison suspended for 12 months.
The defendant was also ordered to complete a 16-week curfew, keeping him at home between 7pm and 7am.
Kinsella, of Kendal’s Capper Close, was also told to pay a £128 victim surcharge and costs of £85.
Judge Temperley also ordered the knife be taken away.