An Isle of Wight man has avoided a jail sentence after being caught in possession of a knife in public, which he was borrowing from a chef to use ‘for his nails’.

Austin Collinstone, of West Street, Newport, previously pleaded guilty to possessing a bladed article in a public place and attended the Isle of Wight Magistrates’ Court on Friday, November 24, for sentencing.

Lauren Stone, prosecuting, said police were called after two men were seen having a disagreement on Pyle Street when one of them pulled out a knife and started making threats.

Officers found Collinstone and another man sitting on a bench on Furlongs, with the 49-year-old volunteering to police that he had a kitchen knife.  

The prosecution said Collinstone, who has nine previous convictions for 12 offences, proceeded to answer ‘no comment’ in a police interview.

Oscar Vincent, defending, said his client admits having the two-to-three-inch curved blade in his pocket but denies being the person with a ‘six-inch knife’ making threats on Pyle Street.

Mr Vincent said the knife Collinstone had belonged to his friend, a chef, and he intended to return it to them.

Collinstone was handed a 12-month community order, £120 fine, £114 surcharge and £85 costs.