Burnley ex-heroin addict threatened mosque-goers with scissors after claiming he had been called a 'smack-head'
A decorator terrified a Burnley mosque member when he pulled his scissors on him and threatened to stab him, leaving the victim’s children traumatised and in tears, a court heard.
Jason Anthony Lloyd, who was at a pharmacy across the road, was said to have tried to conceal the large pair of scissors, which the victim had believed was a knife, up his sleeve when police arrived.
The 47-year old ex-heroin addict, who claimed he had been called a “smack-head,” told officers he had been threatened and was standing up for himself, Burnley magistrates were told.
Lloyd, who has 19 offences on his record but has been out of trouble for some time, could now be facing jail after the incident on Colne Road in the town on June 4th.
Mr Glenn Anderton, prosecuting, told the hearing the complainant and his sons had been to celebrate Eid and to pray. They went to the pharmacy at about 9pm. The defendant was outside, standing at the door, with a small dog, and everybody had to walk round him to get in.
Mr Anderton said the victim was with his uncle and the children and everyone was happy and smiling. The prosecutor continued: "It would appear the defendant believed people may have been laughing at him. He said: 'What are you laughing at? Have you got a problem?' Someone else said: 'Leave it,' and the complainant told him: 'We are not laughing at you. We are talking amongst each other'."
The prosecutor said the defendant pulled out what the victim believed was a knife in his right hand, pointed it towards his stomach, and threatened: "I’m going to stab you.” Mr Anderton said "He was extremely frightened. The defendant’s face was full of anger.”
The prosecutor said the victim and his family went into his cousin’s house across the road and police were called. Officers found he had a large pair of decorating scissors, at least eight inches long, up his sleeve. Lloyd claimed he had been threatened and was standing up for himself, saying he wasn’t a wallflower and knew how to protect himself.
Mr Anderton said when the defendant was questioned, he said he had been waiting for medication for previous difficulties with drugs misuse, in the pharmacy. He claimed he believed he was being talked about, heard the word “smack-head” being used, felt threatened, and got the scissors from his pocket to scare them.
He said he feared for his safety as about eight men started to follow him down the street and produced the scissors above his head as he was scared. He was walking home when stopped by the police.
The prosecutor went on: "He accepted he had had two cans of strong lager. He said he felt horrible about the incident and accepted he knew he was wrong for taking the scissors out.”
Mr Glen Smith, defending, said Lloyd had been decorating and had been using the scissors which were in a pocket in his overalls. In his view, disparaging comments were made at the pharmacy and he felt uncomfortable and immediately wanted to leave.
Mr Smith told the court as Lloyd was leaving the area, he would say about eight men were, in his view, following him. He got the scissors out - unwisely, he accepted. The solicitor continued: "He does not recall using the words that have been ascribed to him. He didn’t point them at anybody. He simply got them out and said: 'Leave me alone'."
"He was a heroin addict many years ago. This was a reaction to something he felt was developing around him.”
Lloyd, of Healeywood Road in Burnley, admitted using threatening, abusive, or insulting words or behaviour. His case was adjourned until the New Year, for an all-options open pre-sentence report.