Love tiff knife man avoids jail

Colyton man admits being in possession of a knife and causing criminal damage.

A Colyton man has avoided a jail sentence after being found in possession of a knife.

Ross Anthony Mark Downs, of School Lane, received a community order for two years when he appeared for sentencing at Central Devon Magistrates’ Court last Wednesday after admitting to being in possession of a knife and causing criminal damage.

The 26-year-old was also ordered to undergo supervision and comply with the Building Better Relationships programme. The court heard the incident had arisen as a result of the break-up of Downs’ relationship with his then partner Rebecca Majors.

The prosecution stated on the day in question the police were called following reports of a disturbance and on arriving at the address found the defendant at the front door where he was described as being “not in the best of moods”. He went on to say to police “I’ve lost everything, arrest me”.

During the incident the defendant punched a wall and caused damage to a door. He subsequently tried to repair some of the damage using “Polyfilla” before police arrived.

Downs was later searched by police and found to have a knife in the waistband of his shorts, which he had taken to make his partner think he was going to harm himself.

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The prosecution described it as a “last desperate attempt to salvage his relationship”.

Rachel Bentley, defending, said: “Prior to this matter he (Downs) has been out of trouble for quite a bit of time. He has got previous matters for battery which were not domestic related.”

She stated there were no threats made in this case and described it as a “desperate, misguided effort”.

Miss Bentley said that the defendant understands the relationship is over and has since started a new relationship and also taken steps to deal with his drinking.

The chairman of the bench Jonathan Jenkins said: “We are giving you credit for pleading guilty. The credit is we are going to give you a community order, not a prison sentence. The possession of a knife is a very serious offence and criminal damage.”

He added: “If you break any requirements or commit further offences your sentence could be increased or you will be re-sentenced, which could include going to prison.”

Downs was also ordered to pay �50 compensation and �85 court costs.