A “PEACEMAKER” has admitted possession of an offensive martial arts weapon in a public place during a night out in Worcester.

Benjamin Clarke, aged 21, of Claverham Close, St John’s, Worcester, admitted he had the kubotan, a form of self-defence key chain, in The Cross after ordering the illegal weapon over the internet.

The court was told Clarke did not use the weapon or threaten anyone before police arrested him on Sunday, August 26.

His friend, Jonathan Winters, aged 22, of Hayslan Avenue, Malvern, also appeared in court the same day. He faces charges of assault occasioning actual bodily harm using a similar type of weapon and possession of an offensive weapon following an assault that same night.

Winters did not enter pleas to either charge and he is due back at Worcester Magistrates Court on Tuesday, November 27, for the case to be committed to the crown court.

Adrian Jones, prosecuting, said: “He thought it was legal to carry it. He had the item in his pocket should something happen and he needed to defend himself.”

Mr Jones said he was a man of previous good character.

Susie Duncan, defending, said: “CCTV shows he took no part in the assault. He’s just trying to calm the situation down.”

Mrs Duncan said Clarke had only had three pints over the course of the evening and a breath test at the police station showed he would have been legal to drive.

Both men had been refused entry to Tramps because Winters was wearing trainers shortly before the incident. When Clarke was talking to the police he told police he had the kubotan.

Mrs Duncan said: “He accepts that ignorance is no defence. He said he and his friend both bought them on a site that said they were legal in the UK. He didn’t realise he had it in his pocket.”

Sue Perry, chairman of the bench, said: “We heard that you were a peacemaker but we take very seriously the fact you went out with a weapon.”

The apprentice engineer was served with a 12-month community order to include supervision, 150 hours of unpaid work and £85 costs. He offered to pay the amount within 28 days. They ordered the kubotan to be destroyed.