A teenager has admitted he stabbed a 16-year-old boy in the back as he walked along with his girlfriend.

The attack happened close to The Concourse shopping centre in Skelmersdale on January 4 as the victim walked along the footpath.

His attacker, another 16-year-old who can't be named for legal reasons, then approached him from behind and knifed him.

The victim was rushed to hospital for treatment and later released.

The teenager pleaded guilty to stabbing a 16-year-old boy near The Concourse in Skelmersdale

At Preston Crown Court, on Monday February 4, the young attacker pleaded guilty to wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm and possession of a knife.

He was sentenced for four years in youth detention as a result.

A spokesperson for Lancashire Police said: "A teenager has been sentenced to four years after admitting a stabbing.

"The 16-year-old, who can’t be named for legal reasons, pleaded guilty to wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm and possession of a knife.

"The youth, from Skelmersdale, appeared at Preston Crown Court on Monday 4th February and was sentenced to four years in youth detention."

Detective Sgt Paul Mulrooney, of South CID, said: “Carrying and using a knife can have tragic consequences and it is only through good fortune that the victim in this case was not more seriously injured, or even killed. We will continue to proactively target those who carry knives as part of our work to keep our communities safe.”

Knife bins have been installed across Lancashire, including in Skelmersdale, to give people a safe place to dispose of unwanted knives and sharp items.

A total of 16 new safe and secure containers will be located in busy, well-lit areas that are easy to get to as part of Lancashire Constabulary’s ongoing work to keep knives off the streets.

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They aim to provide people with a legal and safe way to surrender knives and bladed items.

Using the bins helps to keep unwanted bladed weapons out of circulation. Any knives will be disposed of by the police unless there is an obvious sign one has been used in a crime.

• Two other youths, aged 13 and 14 from Skelmersdale, were arrested in connection with the incident and remain under investigation.