Teen launched nunchuck street attack in South Shields

Most people will know nunchucks best from martial arts movies - as pictured here with Bruce Lee.
Most people will know nunchucks best from martial arts movies - as pictured here with Bruce Lee.

A teenage thug is facing jail after a booze-fuelled street attack using a set of nunchucks.

Josh Swalwell, 19, and a friend had downed a bottle of vodka between them before carrying out the unprovoked assault in Laygate, South Shields, with the martial arts weapon - two batons joined by a chain.

Lidl, Laygate

Lidl, Laygate

Swalwell, of Galsworthy Road, South Shields, admitted charges of assault by beating and possession of an offensive weapon when he appeared at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.

Magistrates declined jurisdiction and sent the case to Newcastle Crown Court for sentencing.

The incident was sparked when Swalwell’s friend - who was given a police caution for his role in the offence - barged into victim Jordan Riley as he was out with his partner on September 14.

The friend punched Riley in the face before Swallwell produced the nunchucks out of his pocket and hit him with it.

Swalwell then produced a set of nunchucks and struck Riley with the weapon

Lee Poppet

The court heard that Mr Riley was left “fearing for him and his girlfriend’s safety” and suffered injuries to his head, face and body - but did not require medical assistance.

Lee Poppet, prosecuting, said: “The crown would say the weapon was used in dangerous circumstances and the case should be sent to the Crown Court for sentencing.

“Mr Riley was walking with his girlfriend by a bus stop near Lidl, in Laygate, South Shields, when he saw two men walking towards him. One barged him to him so hard he was nearly knocked over.

“Mr Riley asked him what he was doing and the man replied ‘what are you going to do about it’ before punching him on the side of the face.

“Swalwell then produced a set of nunchucks and struck Mr Riley with the weapon. Mr Riley managed to get Swalwell in a headlock and the nunchucks dropped to the floor.

“Riley then snapped the nunchucks to stop them being used any further.”

He added: “He suffered injuries to his head, face and body and feared for his safety and that of his girlfriend.”

Laura Johnson, defending, said: “He accepts responsibility for what he did and made full and frank admissions to police and has entered a guilty plea.

“Himself and the co-accused had consumed a litre bottle of vodka before going into South Shields. The other two individuals bumped into each other and a fight took place.

“Swalwell saw the complainant was getting the better of his friend and accepts he had the nunchucks in his possession and used them.

“He wasn’t sure if he connected or not.”

Magistrates declined jurisdiction and sent the case to Newcastle Crown Court for sentencing, next month.

Swalwell was granted unconditional bail until then.