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Court / Lerwick man jailed for threatening behaviour while in possession of a knife

A YOUNG man from Lerwick who behaved in an abusive and threatening manner towards a former partner as well as an NHS nurse, before being found to be in possession of a sharply pointed ornamental dagger with a seven-inch blade, has been jailed for ten months.

Appearing for sentencing before Lerwick Sheriff Court on Wednesday via videolink from Grampian Prison, Ellis Olav Birnie was also jailed for two earlier offences for which he had previously been told to be of good behaviour.

The court heard how 26-year-old Birnie did shout, swear and behave in a threatening manner at an address in Lerwick on 30 September. During the incident it became clear that Birnie was in possession of a knife.

After leaving the scene of the confrontation Birnie was confronted by a police officer in the town’s Commercial Street, handcuffed and searched.

Procurator fiscal Duncan Mackenzie described the dagger found on Birnie as having a seven-inch blade with both sides of the blade sharpened and “certainly not ornamental”.

Defence solicitor Tommy Allan said there were a number of positives in the social enquiry report before court and added that his client did not shy away from being responsible for both offences.

He said Birnie had a “long history of difficulties” and was realistic about his prospects.

Sheriff Ian Cruickshank told Birnie that he had no option but to impose a prison term.

He received ten months for behaving in a threatening manner and eight months for possessing an offensive weapon. A further month was added for breaching a court order to be of good behaviour.

All three sentences are to run concurrently, resulting in an overall prison term of ten months.

Sheriff Cruickshank also ordered Birnie not to contact and attempt to contact his former partner for the next two years, and approved a motion by the Crown for the knife to be forfeited.