Bullied Exmouth teen threatened driver with knife
PUBLISHED: 11:09 24 May 2019 | UPDATED: 11:09 24 May 2019
A teenager who threatened a driver with a knife after a street confrontation said he carried the weapon because of school bullying.
Lewis Palmer pulled the penknife out of his back pocket during the argument in Exmouth and told the other man to return to his car.
He was ordered to work with the probation service to change his attitude to carrying weapons when he appeared at Exeter Crown Court on Thursday (May 23).
Palmer, now aged 20, of Seymour Road, Exmouth, admitted affray and was ordered to undertake 12 days of rehabilitation activities and pay £200 costs by Recorder Simon Levene.
He told him: "You only have to watch the news to know the concern there is about knife crime at the moment.
"This was an affray involving a knife but you saw this incident in the context of what had happened to you before, particularly at school."
Nigel Wraith, prosecuting, said a driver who was stopped at a crossing at the junction of Exeter Road and Withycombe Village Road on May 25 last year challenged Palmer because he saw him barge into a female pedestrian.
There was an exchange of words which led to the driver pulling up and getting out to confront Palmer. He responded by pulling a two-and-a-half inch knife from his back pocket and opening it.
When police arrested him, he said he had researched weapons on the internet and knew the knife was legal because its blade was less than three inches.
Rachel Smith, defending, said Palmer suffers from anxiety and panic attacks as a result of suffering severe bullying and carried the knife in a misguided attempt at self protection.
She said he produced it during the confrontation because he thought he was about to be attacked.
He is now working as an apprentice at a car showroom and working with his GP to tackle issues of anxiety and ADHD.