A district judge has demanded to know why it took nearly two years to bring a youth before the courts for an offensive weapon offence.

District Judge Alexandra Preston said there were good reasons for youths being dealt with differently to adults and the delay in the case of Jayed Grundy had denied him that.

“Why on earth has it taken two years to reach court?” she asked.

Henry Prescott, prosecuting, said he didn’t have an explanation for the delay.

“The only thing I can do is send a message to the police indicating your displeasure and asking for an explanation,” said Mr Prescott.

Grundy, 19, of Church Street, Great Harwood, pleaded guilty to possessing an offensive weapon, a knuckle duster, in a public place, after being caught in Darwen on November 25, 2021.

He was made subject to a community order for six months with five days rehabilitation activity requirement and ordered to pay £85 costs and a £114 victim surcharge.

District Judge Preston said if he had been dealt with as a youth Grundy would have received a referral order.

“It was the first time you had been in trouble with the police and you have not been in trouble in the two years since,” said District Judge Preston.

“It should be perfectly obvious why people are not allowed to walk around in public with a knuckle duster.”

Mr Prescott said police were called to Darwen Mobiles on Duckworth Street.

“There were two males in the shop and one or both of them were in possession of knives,” said Mr Prescott.

“Grundy attempted to leave when the police arrived but he was detained  and when he was searched the knuckle duster was found in his possession.

"A knife had been thrown behind the counter.”

Aftab Bakhat, mitigating, said his client had been unbelievably naive and had admitted as much at the time of the offence.

“He had been in a relationship which failed and he started hanging around with a negative peer group,” said Mr Bakhat. “He has bettered himself since this incident.”

He said Grundy had enrolled on an Open University  degree course in criminal law and had stopped associating with the negative influences in his life.

“He has some insight into what he did and the fear that was caused,” added Mr Bakhat.