Man who brandished knife at ex spared jail

Written by Peter Davison on .

Swindon Crown CourtSwindon Crown CourtA man who brandished a knife after throwing eggs at a former partner during a drunken attack has been spared a jail term.

Ben Miles lost his cool after a spate of teasing from his ex and a pal who were branding him a 'paedophile', a court heard.

But after hearing the 24-year-old quickly put down the weapon and had been provoked a judge imposed a community order.

Tessa Hingston, prosecuting, told Swindon Crown Court how the incident took place between 8pm and 9pm on Sunday, July 17.

She said he had been in a relationship with a near neighbour and after it ended she and a friend had been warned by the police about 'derogatory communications'.

"On that particular evening the various parties were sitting out in their gardens drinking alcohol," she said.

Miles could hear laughing coming from the two women, which he thought was provocative, so he went to a local shop and bought some eggs.

He then threw them at the women, missing them, before going into the house and getting a large knife from the kitchen.

Miss Hingston said he was yelling 'I'll stab you if you come near me, I have nothing to lose', as he started walking towards the woman's house.

When neighbours warned him that armed police might come he replied 'Let them come, I don't care'.

She said he eventually threw the knife down in his mother's garden before repeatedly kicking the fence, damaging panels and posts.

Miles, of St Margaret's Mead, Marlborough, pleaded guilty to affray, criminal damage and possessing a bladed article.

Cathy Thornton, defending, said that he had been in the garden when he heard comments like 'rapist' and 'paedophile' coming from the other garden.

"He is at pains to reassure me he wasn't going to hurt any of them, but he did want to frighten them," she said.

After the incident she said he had tried to harm himself and was admitted to a psychiatric hospital, and was now working at Tesco and Marlborough Town FC

Passing sentence Judge Tim Mousley QC said "Your behaviour was disgraceful on July 17, in the evening.

"Had it been limited to the provocation towards you and throwing some eggs around I doubt you would find yourself before the courts. It went further than that.

"You were gradually losing your temper. Then you did lose your temper. You were under the influence of drink and then you went to get a knife, and grabbed that.

"It seems you came to your senses fairly quickly after picking up that knife. You are also in work, which is fairly well paid."

He imposed an 18 month community order with a thinking skills programme, 20 days of rehabilitation activity requirement and 150 hours of unpaid work.