Man who brandished knife at police spared jail

A man who brandished a 12-inch kitchen knife at police was today (Monday) spared an immediate jail sentence.

Marc Gowler, 30, made a series of aggressive 999 calls after becoming upset that his partner had walked out with their young daughter.

When two police officers arrived at the property in Mercer Row, Louth just before 9pm they could see Gowler standing in his front garden with a large kitchen knife, Lincoln Crown Court head.

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Melissa Morton, prosecuting, said: "He was brandishing a large kitchen knife which was 12 inches in length including the handle.

"He was running along the front railings of the property shouting and screaming towards the police."

Miss Morton said the officers told Gowler they were going to help him, but he threw the knife into his front door and ran towards them.

The court heard Gowler was arrested after pava spray was deployed by the officers.

Records of the 999 calls showed Gowler had become increasingly aggressive, making stabbing threats, and had warned the police to bring a dog.

During interview Gowler said he picked up the knife because he wanted help, and accepted it may have appeared scary to onlookers.

Nicola Patten, mitigating, argued Gowler could be dealt with by a suspended sentence as he had no previous convictions.

"This was very much a one off, he is ashamed of his behaviour," Miss Patten added.

"He was very upset at his domestic situation and accepts his reaction was completely inappropriate.

"The reason for the knife was to get help, but he knows it was the wrong way of handling the situation."

Passing sentence, Judge John Pini QC told Gowler he would only be in prison for a matter of weeks if he passed an immediate jail sentence: "I want to keep you on a tighter leash than that.

"To be fair to you within a matter of seconds of the police arriving you threw the knife into your doorway.

"But your behaviour was disgraceful, and obviously frightening for the police officers involved."

Gowler, who is now of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to a charge of affray on 13 July, 2021.

He was sentenced to six months imprisonment, suspended for 18 months, and must also obey a three month curfew between 7pm and 7am and complete 20 rehabilitation activity days.