Mother claims she left knife in pocket of accused son’s jacket

A knife found in the pocket of a teenager stopped in Belfast may have been left there by his mother, a court heard on Monday.

Jack Lindsay claims he knew nothing about the discovery made when he was detained on the Cliftonville Road on Saturday.

The 18-year-old, of Cardigan Drive in the city, faces a charge of possessing an article with a blade or point in a public place.

As Lindsay appeared before Belfast Magistrates’ Court a judge was told he also had a knife on him when he was stopped a month before.

At that stage he claimed to be carrying it for his own protection because he feared he was under threat.

Lindsay is not charged over that incident, and disputes the alleged circumstances surrounding his arrest at the weekend.

Defence solicitor Fergal MacElhatton called the accused’s mother to give evidence about how the blade came to be in his coat pocket.

She told the court that she had put on the jacket the previous day and taken a couple of knives and screwdriver outside to fix a problem with her gas supply.

It was only when her son was arrested that she realised what had happened, according to her account.

“I was turning the whole system on and off,” she said.

“I’m only assuming I left it (the knife) in the pocket.”

Mr MacElhatton argued that her explanation provided a “workable defence” to the charge against his client.

“He’s saying he wasn’t aware of (the knife) and wasn’t brandishing it for any assaults,” the lawyer added.

Bail was refused, however, due to concerns about any re-offending.

Lindsay was remanded in custody to appear again by video-link next month.