Teenager caught with knife outside Kettering bar let off with £120 fine

Brooklyn Bar in Kettering.

Brooklyn Bar in Kettering.

A teenager caught with a knife outside a Kettering bar was let off with a fine after he claimed he was chased by armed youths just a week before.

Daniel Sapala, 19, pleaded guilty to possession of a weapon in a public place after being searched outside Brookyln Bar in Ebenezer Place.

Wellingborough Magistrates’ Court heard how Sapala, of Elm Road, was stopped by bouncers as part of a search protocol at about 1.20am on December 3 last year.

Prosecuting, Julie Costello said door staff found a red kitchen knife in his bag.

She said: “The defendant approached the entrance and was searched by door staff.

“A four-and-a-half inch knife was recovered in a bag carried by the defendant.

“He admitted possession and was remorseful.

“He said he did not have any intention to hurt anyone with it.”

Mitigating, Ben Brown said Sapala only carried the knife after being chased through town and didn’t realise he had done anything wrong.

He said: “The week before this offence took place he was chased through town by youths with knives.

“He did not think he had done anything wrong because if he did he would have thrown it in the hedges or ran away.

“He admitted having it there because he was scared of other people.

“He is a young man and has never been in trouble before.

“He is not only remorseful, he is terrified.”

Chairman of the bench Paul Smith showed leniency to Sapala and fined him just £120.

Mr Smith said: “Carrying a knife a going into a public house, you are lucky.

“Because of some of the guidance we have you could have been looking at the crown court or custody.

“We are going to make a fine which is quite exceptional.

“You have learned a lesson that doing some things can be very silly.”

Sapala was also ordered to pay costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £30.