Cupar man who took meat cleaver into street is jailed

Cupar Sheriff Court.
Cupar Sheriff Court.

A CUPAR man who took a meat cleaver into the street after being challenged to a fight has been jailed for six months.

Hugh Cape (48) insisted he had no intention of using the eight and a half inch blade — but Sheriff Charles Macnair told him his actions could have had lethal consequences.

Cupar Sheriff Court heard last Thursday that a ‘stramash’ unfolded in Bishopgate on March 4 following a dispute over drugs.

Depute procurator fiscal Brian Robertson told the court Cape had received text messages — which he ignored — from another man asking to be supplied with cannabis.

The man turned up at his house but was told to leave and later texted Cape challenging him to a fight.

Cape, of Well Place, picked up a meat cleaver from his kitchen and headed out into Bishopgate.

A witness called the police after seeing an argument taking place between Cape and the other man — something that Mr Robertson said developed into a “stramash”.

When questioned by officers, Cape alleged he had been punched two or three times in the face by the other man and said he had no intention of using the blade.

Speaking on behalf of his client, defence solicitor Douglas Williams said the meat cleaver described in the charge was in fact a Japanese-style utensil used for preparing food.

Cape, it was said, had been using it to cut up a pineapple.

Mr Williams alleged that Cape had been intimidated and then attacked by the other man — named in court as Liam Honeyman.

The incident was described as being out of character for Cape, who accepted he had acted in the wrong way.

Sheriff Macnair told Cape, who pleaded guilty to the charge: “You were challenged to a fight over drugs.

“Why that should happen I don’t know and I don’t care.

“When you had a difficulty you did not phone the police — you decided to take matters into your own hands and you went into the street with a meat cleaver.

“That was a vicious weapon which, had it been used by somebody, was likely to have caused very serious injury or even death.”

He went on: “The carrying of weapons in public cannot be tolerated.

“Even if someone goes out with no intention to use it, that intention can change.

“And if it gets dropped, someone else can pick it up and use it.

“Many people have been seriously injured or killed by weapons which were taken out for defensive purposes.”