Man armed with knife in Norwich wanted “revenge” for murdered friend

David James at Norwich Magistrates Court.PHOTO BY STAFF.

David James at Norwich Magistrates Court.PHOTO BY STAFF. - Credit: SIMON FINLAY

A man armed with a knife was arrested after calling police saying he wanted to 'take revenge' for a murdered friend.

Police were called to Suffolk Square, off Vauxhall Street, Norwich, on December 30, city magistrates heard yesterday.

David James, 31, who, the court heard, committed the offence while struggling to deal with the death of a friend in Great Yarmouth, had bought eight or nine cans of cider and armed himself with a knife from his mother's kitchen.

Prosecutor Fergus Harold, told the court: 'This came to the notice of police because the defendant phoned in the report himself.

'He said he had a knife and wanted to take revenge for his friend Andrew, who had been murdered the previous week.

'Police were dispatched to the location and found him in Suffolk Square. When they approached him a black-handled kitchen knife fell out of his pocket.

'In interview he said he was upset because his friend Andy had recently been murdered in Great Yarmouth.

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'He had bought eight or nine cans of cider from the local shop, got drunk and taken medication that he shouldn't have done.

'As a result he can't recall clearly the event. He said the knife was from his mum's house, he didn't know why he had it other than he was upset and drunk.'

Rebecca Utton, mitigating, said the incident was a 'cry for help'.

'He has lost various close friends and relatives,' she added.

'Having seen the incident where a close friend was murdered he was struggling. Because of police procedures he could not see the body and there had not been a funeral, so there was no process to grieve.'

No further details of the alleged Yarmouth incident were given to the court.

Admitting possessing an offensive weapon, James, of Heigham Grove, was given a six-month prison sentence suspended for 12 months, with an alcohol treatment requirement and rehabilitation activity requirement.

The knife will be destroyed and James will pay £85 costs and an £80 victim surcharge.