A man who was caught with an offensive weapon in public for the second time has narrowly been spared from jail.
Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on Tuesday, January 26, how Lee John Kellet, 41, of Chapel Road, Grassmoor, Chesterfield, was found by police to have a cosh under the driver’s seat of his car.
Prosecuting solicitor Rod Chapman said: “Police stopped a Vauxhall car because they were checking if it had an MOT and Kellett was the driver.
“Under the driver’s seat, police found a black-coloured cosh.”
Kellett told police someone must have left the cosh and it was not his even though he was aware it had been in the car.
The defendant, who has a previous conviction for a similar matter from 1992, pleaded guilty to possessing an offensive weapon in a public place after the incident on October 1, last year.
He also failed to appear for a hearing on January 8 regarding the latest offence.
Probation officer Katie Webberley said Kellett needs to address drug issues and such associations have generated a negative peer group which may have been a factor in this offence.
She also explained that difficulties with bereavements have been linked to a slip back towards drugs.
Defence solicitor Annette Thomas said: “The weapon wasn’t brandished or handled in dangerous circumstances.
“He had taken and placed stuff in one job-lot from one vehicle into another and he knows he should have got rid of the weapon.”
Magistrates explained that possessing an offensive weapon for the second time means only custodial sentence can be imposed.
However, given the length of time between offences and due to a recent bereavement, magistrates opted to impose a suspended prison sentence.
Kellett was sentenced to 16 weeks of custody suspended for 12 months with a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement and a Drugs Rehabilitation Activity Requirement.
He must also pay £85 costs and an £80 victim surcharge.