Police alerted after armed criminal dropped knife in Hartlepool takeaway

A criminal who regularly carried weapons has been jailed after he was caught in a takeaway with two knives and a toy rifle up his sleeve.

Thursday, 13th January 2022, 4:55 pm

Philip Keenan, 42, from Hartlepool, had 146 previous convictions and since 1995 he had often carried knives and a knuckle duster, a court was told

He had a filleting knife and a Stanley knife blade and the toy up his sleeve in the town’s Golden Dragon takeaway, in Oxford Road, on July 24, Teesside Crown Court has learned.

A customer called the police when Keenan dropped the kitchen knife on the floor and officers discovered the toy gun when they were trying to handcuff him.

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The Golden Dragon, in Oxford Road, Hartlepool. Picture by FRANK REID

He had weapons convictions over several consecutive years, including possessing a knife during a public affray, said prosecutor Uzmah Khan.

She said: “The latest offences involve the possession of two bladed articles in a takeaway that was open to the public, and he had previous convictions for weapons possession offences over many years.”

Stephen Constantine, defending, said that Keenan had been on his way home from a barbecue and he had taken the kitchen knife with him for the food.

He was co-operative with the police,and in prison he had been tackling his drug addiction and mental health problems

Keenan had the tenancy of a house in Hartlepool which he would lose if he was sentenced to more than nine months imprisonment

Judge Chris Smith told Keenan:"The possession of knives in public is an offence, and it is an offence with very good reason

"Knives cause very serious harm and the message has got to go out that people who have knives in public face the consequences which is likely to be a long time in prison, and the offence here is greater because of your past convictions and it was just days after your release from prison

The judge ordered the destruction of the knives.

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