63-year-old woman convicted for threatening couple with knife in B&M for not social distancing

63-year-old woman convicted for threatening couple with knife in B&M for not social distancing

63-year-old Deborah Fudge was convicted today for threatening a couple with a Stanley knife in B&M in October last year – due to her concerns about them not social distancing.

The confrontation took place on 23 October 2020 just after 1:00pm in the DIY aisle of the store, in which the defendant asked the couple to stay two metres away from her.

The complainant, 29-year-old Mr Kent, ignored Fudge at first, and later told her there was enough room for all of them.

Fudge, who resides just outside of Louth, then reached into her handbag, brandishing a Stanley knife and extended it towards the complainants.

Mr Kent confronted the defendant, telling her: “Don’t threaten people with a knife.”

His partner then went to get security, whilst Fudge calmly continued with her shopping.

When later interviewed about the incident, the defendant stated that she did not threaten the couple with a knife, but that she got it out of her handbag because they were standing too close to her.

According to Fudge, the knife had been in her bag for two or three weeks, and she had forgotten about it.

Prosecutor Jeremy Evans from the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) told the court that Fudge said during the initial interview: “If I wanted to kill him, I would’ve done.”

He added: “The complainant was compliant throughout arrest and seemed bemused on the footage about what all the fuss was about.”

His Honour Judge D Tremberg told the court that Fudge is “ashamed of what she’s done” and that he is taking into account Fudge’s age and poor emotional and physical health.

He also considered Fudge’s no previous convictions and her initial guilty plea to the incident at Grimsby Magistrates’ Court.

Fudge was then sentenced to a 12-month suspended sentence and ordered to pay £85 within 28 days.

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