A TEENAGER who knifed an "innocent" boy in a Bournemouth park has been detained.

The 15-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, stabbed his victim in the chest and face following an incident in Pelhams Park on the night of Saturday, December 16.

The victim and three friends were listening to music at around 8.30pm when they were approached by the defendant and another boy. The two, who were on bicycles, shone a torch at the group before the defendant drew two large knives from a rucksack carried by the other boy.

He then pointed a knife in front of him and the victim stepped forward from his friends. The defendant stabbed the victim in the chest, causing an inch-deep cut.

The victim wrestled with his attacker and fell to the ground. He felt blows to his face which he thought were punches. However, he later discovered he had two deep lacerations below his left eye, and was taken to hospital for treatment.

Police launched an investigation and called for members of the public with information about the incident to come forward. As a result, the defendant and a 14-year-old boy were arrested.

The younger boy admitted possessing a knife blade or pointed article in connection with the incident. He was sentenced to a 12-month referral order at Poole Magistrates' Court on December 22.

The older defendant has now admitted wounding with intent and possessing a knife blade or pointed article. He appeared at Bournemouth Crown Court last week and was sentenced to five years in detention, as well as a two-year extended licence period.

Detective Sergeant Stewart Gates, of Bournemouth CID, said: “This was a violent attack on an innocent boy involving a knife that left the victim with nasty injuries.

“Any assaults involving a bladed weapon will always carry the potential for extremely serious injuries and Dorset Police is committed to tackling knife crime in the county. Such assaults will be investigated thoroughly.

“I would like to praise the victim, witnesses and their families for having the courage to come forward and assist with our investigation.

“Knife crime is not necessarily an issue relating to young people in Dorset – the average age of a victim of knife crime in the county was over 35 in 2017.

“However, we recognise it is an issue and concern among young people and our Safer Schools Team will continue to work with them to educate and empower them on personal safety and warn of the dangers of carrying knives.”