Man jailed for third knife offence in three years

Ipswich Crown Court

Ipswich Crown Court heard it was the defendant's third knife crime in three years - Credit: Charlotte Bond

A Colchester man who pulled out a knife during a row with another man while they were queuing outside McDonald’s in the town centre has been jailed for six months for his third knife offence.

The other man had kicked the knife, which had a six-inch blade, out of Charles Varnals’ hand  and it fell to the ground where it was picked up and taken to a nearby bin by a man who’d witnessed the incident, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

Varnals, 23, of Market Lane, Witham, admitted having a knife on June 16 last year.

Sentencing him, Recorder Jeremy Benson said: “This was a frightening experience for other people and serious injury could have been caused.”

The court heard that Varnals has previous convictions for knife offences  in 2019 and 2020 and was therefore liable to a mandatory six-month prison sentence, less credit for his guilty plea.

James Wing, for Varnals, said his client had made a disapproving noise when he saw a man arguing with his partner while they were waiting in the queue outside McDonald’s  and the man had “rounded” on him.

Varnals had pulled out the knife and accepted that it was an inappropriate use of force in the circumstances.