September 30, 2023

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Derby knifeman who caused havoc in Boots to miss years of new baby’s life

4 min read

A previous version of this story reported that Ki Grant-Finlayson committed offences of threatening behaviour and possession of an offensive weapon in Addison Road, Derby, on October 1, 2021. These offences were actually committed on August 25, 2021, but Grant-Finlayson pleaded guilty to the count of threatening behaviour on October 1, 2021.

A young father will miss the next two years of his baby’s life after being sentenced for chasing teen rivals with a machete as part of a turf war between gangs of youths.

Ki Grant-Finlayson was seen near his home address in Addison Road in Allenton, Derby, on August 25, 2021, armed with a machete which he claimed was to defend himself against a larger number of rival teens who had entered his “turf”.

That came after two earlier incidents involving knives, including a chase through the Boots in Derbion where Grant-Finlayson, 19, had a knife stashed away in his jeans.

He leaves his partner, who is studying law and who was in court for the sentencing hearing along with his mother and stepfather, to look after his young child.

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Amy Earnshaw, prosecuting, told Derby Crown Court on Tuesday, March 8, that the first offence involved Grant-Finlayson and two friends being chased by security in Derbion on August 21, 2020.

After being cornered in Boots, the teen ran through the aisles of the busy store to evade capture by security staff, leaving his friends behind as they were apprehended.

Grant-Finlayson was arrested on September 9, 2020, and at the time was in breach of a three-year Youth Rehabilitation Order for an earlier affray committed in November 2019.

He admitted breaching the order in crown court and had already pleaded guilty to a count of threatening behaviour and another of possession of a bladed article.

But while on bail he was again arrested on May 14, 2021 when he was seen on CCTV in Francis Street, Derby, threatening other teenagers with a machete in a short confrontation, when he then hid by a car parked on the road.

Grant-Finlayson, who joined the hearing via a video link from HMP Brinsford, a young offenders’ institution near Wolverhampton, was seen limping in the footage following the confrontation and was arrested shortly after by police, but he began to verbally abuse officers.

Once in the back of a police car, the young man laid down and resisted attempts to get him up, telling a female officer “you can’t get me up, you are a female, you can’t get me up” and calling her a “stupid *****” and “dumb *****”, finishing his display by spitting on the window and threatening to spit in the officer’s hair.

Attempts to restrain him in the police car led to Grant-Finlayson kicking one of the officers in the face and bragging that he was “only using 50 per cent of his strength”.

He was then bailed again before going on to commit the offences in Addison Road in August 2021, with the weapon he was carrying described by a witness as being around two feet long. He handed himself in to police shortly after.

He has been remanded in custody since September 27, 2021.

Stephen Cooper, mitigating, said that Grant-Finlayson had no male role model in his life which had been a partial cause of his offending.

He said: “The defendant is not expecting anything other than immediate custody.

“It has to be conceded that when a knife is produced in public there is a risk of public disorder.

“[On the incident in Boots] There are no witnesses who say he brandished the knife at any of the public. He ran past them [his friends] and carried on running … he did run away from it when things did turn serious.

“He can’t claim the same for the matters on Francis Street or Addison Road.

“On both occasions, others come to his turf and he was defending his turf. I don’t say that to condone him, but on both occasions there was always a two-metre distance [between him and his opponents].

“He has found the estrangement caused by being in a young offenders’ institution particularly difficult. It has kept him away from his mum and partner, and his child.

“Having had that time to reflect, to my knowledge, there have been no problems in prison. I have not been made aware of any issues at Brinsford.

“He acknowledges that he has to grow up. Being on the cusp of adulthood, he has got to stand up to his responsibilities.

“He wants to change his ways, he wants to re-establish his family life.”



Ki Grant-Finlayson.
Ki Grant-Finlayson.

Overall, Grant-Finlayson pleaded guilty to nine offences; breaching a youth rehabilitation order, two counts of possessing a bladed article, three counts of threatening behaviour and one count each of criminal damage, assaulting an emergency worker and possessing an offensive weapon.

Sentencing him to a total of 21 months in a young offenders’ institution, Recorder Justin Wigoder said that he hoped the sentence would “make the penny drop”.

He said: “I’m afraid, Mr Grant-Finlayson, you have given the court no choice and you have done that entirely through your own actions, because you perpetually go around the streets of Derby with bladed implements which is a very, very serious matter.

“The public are fed up with young men carrying knives because young men carrying knives fight, and they get used and people get badly hurt and even killed.

“You have repeatedly demonstrated that you can’t learn your lesson. You will be going to prison for a very, very long time for much of your life if you carry on.”

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