POLICE Inspector Carol Wood has insisted there will be a zero tolerance approach to knife crime after a drunken man, found in a Hawick pub with a 12-inch knife hidden in his sock, was jailed for two years.
He claimed to have found the knife, which had an eight-inch blade, lying beside the Horse monument.
Raymond Adamson, who was heavily intoxicated at the time, told police he had it for his own protection.
But Inspector Wood said: “The consequences of carrying a knife can de deadly, and we will act swiftly when we receive any information about anyone who is in possession of an offensive weapon.
“Anyone who is foolish enough to carry a knife can expect to be arrested and charged, and thereafter dealt with to the full extent of the law.”
Forty-five-year-old Adamson, of Croft Road, appeared on indictment at Jedburgh Sheriff Court and admitted having an offensive weapon on the High Street and at the Exchange Bar in Silver Street, on May 8.
Procurator fiscal Graham Fraser described Adamson as a man who had “majored in the past for breach of the peace and dishonesty.
“At 3.45pm, he was on Hawick High Street with a friend, and was seen concealing a knife in the sleeve of his jacket.”
A concerned member of the public contacted police, who found Adamson in the Exchange Bar.
“He denied having anything, but police found a knife in his sock, which he said was for his own protection,” explained Mr Fraser.
“It was 12 inches long and had an eight-inch blade,” he added. In reply to caution, Adamson said: “I found that at The Horse.”
“He was heavily under the influence of alcohol and diazepam at the time, so this was a very risky situation,” concluded Mr Fraser.
Solicitor Rory Bannerman, defending, said his client had no analogous convictions.
“His previous convictions are largely for breach of the peace and theft,” he explained.
“He had no reasonable excuse for having the knife,” continued Mr Bannerman, “and very much regrets this matter.
“He picked it up near The Horse and kept it, telling police it was for his protection.
“He walked the length of Hawick High Street, and was sitting in the pub when police arrived,” said Mr Bannerman.
“He did have an alcohol issue, which he has sought to address,” he concluded.
Sheriff Derrick McIntyre told Adamson, who was held in custody over lunch: “You have pled guilty to possession of a knife in a public place.
“This was a large knife which you claimed to have found at The Horse monument.
“You were seen to conceal it up your sleeve, which caused witnesses concern.
“Possession of a knife is a very serious matter, and you were also under the influence of alcohol and diazepam,” he added.
As Adamson was led to the cells, he turned to the sheriff and commented: “Thank you very much.”