A BONHILL man found with a “fearsome” kitchen knife in public is set to be assessed for a tough regime of drug testing and treatment as a punishment for the crime.

John McCallum agreed to undergo a ‘drug treatment and testing order’ (DTTO) assessment when he appeared for sentencing at Dumbarton Sheriff Court.

The 40-year-old Pappert resident had previously pleaded guilty to wielding a kitchen knife with a nine-inch serrated blade in an incident in nearby O’Hare on the evening of August 2.

That hearing in February was told that McCallum was seen by police among a large group of people, with a head injury and blood pouring down his face.

He tried to escape by jumping a nearby fence with a drop of between eight and ten feet on the other side, and suffered a significant foot injury as a result.

The February hearing, at which sentence was deferred for a background social work report, was told McCallum – whose record includes a High Court matter in 1996 and several crimes of dishonesty, including the theft of cigarettes worth £3,000 from Young’s Newsagent in Alexandria’s Main Street in 2016 – had been struck from behind after he answered the door to a group of individuals at his home and found himself under attack.

The knife had been shown at last month’s hearing to Sheriff Maxwell Hendry, who described it as a “fearsome weapon”.

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At a sentencing hearing on March 14, McCallum’s solicitor, Kenny Clark, said: “I would like to think the report is of some benefit. He has tried to turn his life around.

“He is insistent that he did not go out that night with the knife. Only because of the extreme situation in which he found himself did he arm himself with it.”

Sheriff Maxwell Hendry told McCallum: “This is an extremely serious matter. I take on board the explanation provided to me by your solicitor, but I’m not going to forget for some time the sight of the knife that was produced in court.”

The case was adjourned until April 10 for McCallum to undergo the DTTO assessment.

He was previously put on a DTTO in 2010, but February’s hearing was told he had “gone off the rails” in 2015 and 2016 after a gap in his offending.

Sheriff Hendry warned him: “If you are assessed as not suitable for a DTTO, the primary position is that I’m considering a further custodial sentence.”