Man brandished knife after being pushed over in Gwynedd pub

Gareth Kells, 41, of Y Bryn, Bontnewydd, was jailed for 14 months for threatening a person with a bladed article in a public place
-Credit: (Image: North Wales Police)

A man who carried a baseball bat into a pub before "swiping" at people with a knife has been jailed. Gareth Kells had been drinking when trouble flared at The Newborough Arms in Bontnewydd.

Kells, of Y Bryn, Bontnewydd, admitted threatening a person with a knife in a public place and other offences. The 41-year-old's barrister today said he has complex medical needs which couldn't be properly managed in jail.

But a judge at Caernarfon Crown Court said he deserved imprisonment and sentenced him to 14 months in custody. Prosecutor Amy Edwards said Kells had been drinking in the Newborough Arms and started bumping into people on April 26.

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One man pushed him to the floor, saying he had gone too far and the defendant left. At 8.50pm on April 26 police got a call from a driver who had seen an "irate" man with a baseball bat outside the pub.

Kells went back into the pub. Someone grabbed the bat and it was placed behind the bar, the court heard. The defendant was "escorted" outside but took a kitchen knife out of his pocket.

Ms Edwards said: "He brandished the knife and started swiping it around." A retired police officer restrained him until police arrived.

Joshua Gorst, defending, accepted it had been "appalling behaviour" which would have "scared the patrons in the pub". He said his client had been unable to deal with the incident and "reverted to his previous bad habit of drinking too much alcohol".

He told police at the scene: "I've done something very foolish" and he is remorseful. Mr Gorst urged the judge to suspend any custodial sentence as his client's "complex and serious medical issues cannot properly be managed in custody".

After losing his father in his twenties, he had turned to alcohol but has been hampered by ill health. He has acute ulcerative colitis and caught an MRSA infection.

The barrister also said that in 2001 Kells was climbing down a seafront when he fell and broke his spine which still leaves him in daily pain. He also has bladder and bowel problems and an "intermittent catheter" due to alternating incontinence and constipation.

He also has a poor immune system and all this affects his mental health making it more difficult to escape his dependency on alcohol, said Mr Gorst. He said Kells had wanted to become a social worker but currently does charity work.

The judge The Recorder Wyn Lloyd Jones told Kells he had been drinking and got involved in an altercation. He should not have gone back the pub.

He said he didn't need him to tell him "people get seriously injured or even killed" by people with knives and that Kells had actually had two. This incident must have been frightening and it was fortunate no-one was injured, added the judge.

He jailed the defendant for 14 months for threatening a person with a bladed article in a public place. He also received concurrent jail terms of eight months for affray, four months for possession of a knife and four months for possession of an offensive weapon in a public place - the baseball bat.

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