Man avoids jail after hiding knife in bottom

Police apprehended Kerr Cowan in Stirling's Raploch district. Picture: TSPL
Police apprehended Kerr Cowan in Stirling's Raploch district. Picture: TSPL
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A THUG caught by cops with a Stanley knife up his backside was shown mercy - after a sheriff agreed he had suffered enough.

James Kerr Cowan, 38, grandson of the late crime clan matriarch Big Mags Haney, hid the instrument after being stopped by cops who thought he was ‘in a state of agitation’.

Falkirk Sheriff Court was told he had been in custody ever since the incident, in July, and had already served the equivalent of a nine-month sentence.


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The maximum sentence for the offence of carrying a knife is five years.

He walked out of court today when Sheriff William Gallagher accepted a submission by Kerr Cowan’s defence agent that because of the time he had already served, and his early plea of guilty, he should be given a drugs treatment and testing order and placed on supervision in the community.

The agent, Virgil Crawford, said Kerr Cowan had been doing well at drug rehab while in prison.

Sheriff Gallagher said he was “still a bit sceptical” but granted an 18 months order with a first review of his progress at a hearing at Stirling Sheriff Court on January 8.

Hhe warned Kerr Cowan, who was appearing for sentence, that he faced a “lengthy custodial sentence” if he didn’t fully comply with the order.

The knife, described as a red ‘box-cutter’ style Stanley knife, rectangular in section, with a retractable blade and a thumb-operated slider on the side, was retrieved during a thorough search - though Mr Crawford insisted it had simply been “between the cheeks” of his client’s bottom, rather than within his rectum, as suggested by the prosecution.

The court heard earlier that the incident occurred near a row of shops in Stirling’s Raploch district, soon after Kerr Cowan had been released from a previous sentence.

Depute fiscal Alison Montgomery said: “About ten past six in the morning, police received a telephone call regarding two men acting suspiciously.

“The police arrived and on seeing the police, the accused went round to the back of the building.

“The police spoke to the other man, and then the accused re-appeared in a state of agitation.

“He started saying he was just waiting for the shop to open.

“He was then detained and taken to the police station.

“He was asked if he had anything, and said he did not, but it became clear that he had a red Stanley knife in his rectum.

“He was placed on his knees and he was instructed to remove the blade, and he did.”

Kerr Cowan told cops: “I wasn’t even going to rob anybody.”

Kerr Cowan, of Raploch, Stirling, pleaded guilty on indictment to possessing the knife, on the Drip Road, Raploch, on July 17th, and committing the offence in breach of a bail order imposed at Forfar Sheriff Court.

Mr Crawford said told the earlier hearing that his client had the knife with him because he had been carrying out some decorating.

Mr Crawford said: “There was a suspicion that the accused and his friend were going to break into a shop.

“The position here is that Mr Cowan has just become a father.

“The circumstance in which he had this knife, was that it was in a pair of trousers he had been wearing previously while decorating his new baby’s bedroom.

“When he was arrested and placed in the police van, he put it between the cheeks of his buttocks.

“It was between his buttocks, not up his rectum.

“The police searched him and they searched the locus.

“Mr Cowan does not dispute that he had a knife in his possession.

It was revealed last year that Kerr Cowan’s record had reached over 100 convictions, including some serious assaults.


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