A MOTHER who pleaded guilty to handing her son a knife during a fight in South Tyneside has walked free from court.
Kerry Giles was accused of trying to pass a knife to her son during a disturbance in Stothard Street, Jarrow, last year.
The 36-year-old pleaded guilty to having a knife in a public place and received a 10-month sentence, suspended for two years at Newcastle Crown Court.
Giles claimed that she had the 6in blade in her handbag to protect herself after splitting from an abusive partner.
The court heard how Giles had previous convictions for shoplifting.
Mr Geoff Cook, defending, said that as Giles had pleaded guilty and had been complying with previous community orders since January of this year, they thought imprisonment was not best suited for her.
Judge Paul Sloan QC said: “The incident happened when your son was involved in a disturbance near your address.
“There was talk of a knife being involved with the other party, you heard this and threw down the knife from a window to your son.
“The knife was not used by anyone, and was picked up and handed back to you.
“I was satisfied you produced the knife into this fight.
“I accept you were in fear of your ex-partner, and this was the reason you carried a knife in all of your handbags.
“This proves why you were carrying the knife, but that is not acceptable when it comes to giving it away to be used.
“I am prepared to see if you can build on the progress you have made.
“I am sentencing you to 10 months in prison, which will be suspended for two years.”
Giles, now living in Newcastle’s West End, was also given a supervision requirement of 18 months and will have to attend a thinking skills programme.
Judge Sloan QC also told Giles that if she was to breach this punishment then she will be certain to get a prison sentence.