A MAN who had a claw hammer in a town centre hadn’t realised it was an offensive weapon, a court heard.

Ryan Ford, 22, had the hammer while on Tangier Street in Whitehaven on December 31 and was reportedly ‘being aggressive’ in his behaviour, Workington Magistrates’ Court heard.

David Martin, defending, said the item was never revealed to anyone on the evening.

A probation officer said Ford had not realised the hammer was an offensive weapon and wanted to apologise for his behaviour.

The defendant, who had no previous convictions, had been diagnosed with anxiety and depression, the court was told.

Ford, of College Street, Whitehaven, admitted a charge of possessing an offensive weapon in a public place. He also admitted failing to surrender to court bail on January 22.

Magistrates imposed a 12-month community order with a 90-day alcohol abstinence and monitoring requirement.

Ford must also complete 10 rehabiliatation activity requirement days. He was ordered to pay £85 costs and a £114 victim surcharge.

An order was made for the forfeiture and destruction of the claw hammer.