A man, previously jailed for a stabbing, who went to an address in Glenarm after drinking five double vodkas and seven or eight pints in a pub and argued with a relative was then seen clutching a kitchen knife out on a street.
Following the early morning incident at Toberwine Street, Brendan Mulvenna (25), formerly of Spring Hill in Glenarm but whose address is now listed as Laurel Lodge at Gardenmore Place in Larne, pleaded guilty to possessing an offensive weapon – a knife – in a public place.
On Thursday, Ballymena Magistrates Court was told the defendant told police it was not his intention to “harm anyone else” with the knife during the incident in May this year.
Defence barrister Neil Moore said his client was a “very troubled young man” and said involvement with knives in the past had “always been for self harm” apart from an incident when he was jailed for brandishing a knife.
That was a reference to the defendant being jailed in 2015 for stabbing a man in a car with a knife in the Glenarm area.
The victim had to take off his seatbelt and lean across the front passenger seat after Mulvenna lunged through a window making several attempts to stab him.
The wound was described at the time in court as “superficial” but the victim was said to have suffered “trauma” as a result of the incident.
Mr Moore told Thursday’s court Mulvenna had a “very difficult time” in jail where he was “bullied” and assaulted and was “witness to excessive levels of violence”.
The barrister said the defendant is receiving treatment for mental health issues and is living in supported living accommodation.
“This case is more of a tragedy for Mulvenna than the public at large,” claimed Mr Moore.
District Judge Nigel Broderick said he had been minded to impose a Probation Order but given the fact the defendant was in supporting living accommodation and getting assistance from statutory agencies he handed down a three months jail term, suspended for a year.
He told Mulvenna: “Given your poor experience of custody previously it should act as a deterrent”.