Rugby pensioner jailed after swiping out in the street with a machete wrapped in a carrier bag

A Rugby pensioner was arrested after he was seen by a CCTV operator drunkenly swiping out in the street with a machete wrapped in a carrier bag.

Tuesday, 24th December 2019, 2:53 pm
Updated Tuesday, 24th December 2019, 2:54 pm
Lloyd Linton

And Lloyd Linton was jailed after a judge at Warwick Crown Court pointed out that it was his third conviction for similar offences.

Linton (75) of Purcell Road, Rugby, had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to possessing a bladed article in a public place.

He was jailed for 146 days, which Judge Andrew Lockhart QC explained was a six-month sentence, the minimum he could be given because of his previous convictions, reduced by 20 per cent for his guilty plea.

Prosecutor Ian Windridge said that at just after 5pm on May 23, a CCTV operator noticed Linton in Railway Terrace, Rugby, carrying something in an Asda carrier bag.

He was walking unsteadily along the road making ‘chopping and swiping motions’ with the bag, which the camera operator could see contained a metal item, so called the police.

As the operator continued to track his movements, Linton, who was clearly intoxicated, sat on a wall where a number of people walked past him, including a woman with a baby in a pram.

He then got up and carried on weaving along the road, swinging the bag around, as he made his way to Regent Place, where he again sat down on a wall.

Having been guided there by the CCTV operator, the police arrested him and found the bag contained a machete.

Mr Windridge made the point that at no stage had Linton taken the machete out of the bag or threatened anyone with it, but he had been making ‘swiping actions.’

And he commented: “What perhaps makes the matter more serious is that he has antecedents.”

Judge Lockhart observed that Linton, who had a conviction in 1977 for wounding, had been convicted of possessing a knife in 2008, and again in 2013 after he had been seen staggering around in a drunken manner in the street and waving a large bread knife.

Nick Devine, defending, pointed out that there was ‘some gap’ between those matters and his most recent offence.

“As far as this offence is concerned, although this was a man in broad daylight wandering around with a machete, it remained in the bag, and people going past seemed unconcerned. He made no threat to anyone.”

Linton, who worked tending people’s gardens, had been working that day, and had been drinking after finishing.

And asking the judge to consider whether there were ‘exceptional circumstances’ which would allow him not to pass an immediate sentence, Mr Devine added that it was the third or fourth time the case had been listed for sentence.

But, for various reasons, it had had to be adjourned on each of the previous occasions, which he said had ‘taken a toll emotionally on Mr Linton.’

Jailing Linton, Judge Lockhart told him: “You are 75 years of age, and you have plainly got an alcohol difficulty. It is very sad that has manifested itself in this way.

“In broad daylight you were plainly intoxicated, and you had with you a machete in a bag, and you were waving it about.”