Hartlepool knife man said he was handed blade just moments before arrest

A released prisoner who was “amazingly drunk” and brandishing a knife in the street near his home is back in jail.

Thursday, 29th July 2021, 4:45 am

Shay Rowbotham, 23, had only been out of prison for three weeks when police were called to deal with him on an April afternoon.

There was no sign of a knife until a witness said it was in his left trouser pocket, Teesside Crown Court was told

When he was interviewed later, he claimed that it had been handed to him just moments before and he intended to bin it although his story was not accepted, said prosecutor Paul Cross.

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The case was heard at Teesside Crown Court.

Rowbotham had 27 convictions for 55 offences – including three involving a knife and other weapons - and he was on prison licence for attacking a Hartlepool shop assistant with a hammer and kicking a police officer.

He was on a release licence for that on April 27 when he was arrested for the nine-inch kitchen knife incident and he was recalled to prison to continue serving a previous sentence until August 20.

The judge said that because of his previous convictions he was subject to a six-month minimum sentence and that the offence was aggravated because he was very drunk.

Martin Scarborough, mitigating, accepted that his client’s recollection of events was poor.

The judge, Recorder David Gordon, told Rowbotham: ”You said in interview that you had been handed the knife shortly before you were arrested and you were going to put it into a bin.

"Given that you were intoxicated you cannot say when you came into possession of that knife

”I have been referred to your previous convictions and of particular relevance is your three convictions for possession of weapons

”You have long term problems with alcohol and drugs and perhaps associated with your mental health problems and learning difficulties and you would seem to have a general inability to control your temper and have on your record some incidents of violence and criminal damage.”

Rowbotham, of Grange Road, Hartlepool, who appeared over a video link from prison, was jailed for seven months after he pleaded guilty to possession of a bladed article in public

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