Teenager caught with 16-inch machete hidden down his trousers

A teenager caught with a 16-inch machete down his trousers after ‘goading’ police has been spared jail.

Thursday, 27th June 2019, 15:32 pm
Updated Friday, 5th July 2019, 05:40 am
Tyler Purvis

Tyler Purvis had ran off when officers approached him on Victoria Road in Washington after he was spotted being ‘aggressive’ and ‘boisterous’ in the street in April.

Prosecutor Michael Bunch told Newcastle Crown Court the 18-year-old was followed by police along Spout Lane and added: "He was abusive towards them and they took the impression he was goading them into chasing him.

"At that point it became clear he had some kind of implement hidden in his clothing."

The court heard Purvis only stopped when he ‘stumbled and fell’ and the machete, plus a sheath, were removed from his trousers, while he struggled with the officers.

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He told police in interview he had the weapon because he had been having ongoing difficulties with another male and wanted it available in case there was a confrontation.

Purvis, of Raydale Avenue, Washington, admitted possessing a bladed article.

Adam Birkby, defending, said Purvis did not brandish or threaten anyone with the weapon and had it for ‘defensive’ not ‘offensive’ reasons.

Mr Birkby said: "It only became apparent he had this knife down his trousers when police saw it and chased him."

The court heard Purvis has a good job with excellent future prospects, positive references and nothing on his criminal record.

Mr Birkby said: "He knows he has put his future at risk by carrying this weapon and is deeply ashamed of himself.

"He has never been in this position before and the court can have confidence he never will again."

Judge Sarah Mallett said: "The possession of blades for the purposes of protection is exactly what is causing widespread national concern at the moment."

She sentenced Purvis to four months in a young offenders’ institution, suspended for two years, with 300 hours unpaid work, £200 fine and £200 costs.

Judge Mallett said she accepted Purvis "would not have normally behaved in that way".