Jail for Padiham knifeman who planned to murder his GP

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A KNIFEMAN said to have been on his way to murder his doctor dropped in at his local off-licence and asked the manager to dial 999, a court was told.

Troubled and angry drunk Baron Ferguson (40) claimed he had set out to kill his GP in revenge over a sick note which did not cover back payment as he had been left with just 54p.

Ferguson, who had had four litres of cider, had earlier been to his doctor’s surgery and made threats, before going home and arming himself with the kitchen knife, Burnley Crown Court heard.

The hearing was told the defendant had “come to his senses” soon after by going into Bargain Booze and asking staff member Nancy Kimble to call police.

The defendant, of Church Street, Padiham, had admitted possessing an offensive weapon on February 23rd and had been committed for sentence by magistrates. He was jailed for 10 months.

Mr Stephen Parker (prosecuting) said Ferguson walked into Bargain Booze, in Padiham. Mrs Kimble knew he had been having problems.

He was drunk, appeared agitated and uptight and asked her to dial 999. He then produced the knife from his sleeve, but refused to give it to her. She felt uncomfortable and used her community radio system to contact CCTV, explaining there was a man with a knife in the shop.

A police officer arrived and told him to put the knife down. Ferguson replied: “I’m not going to give it to anybody.” The defendant was tasered, went to the floor, the knife fell out and he was arrested. He accepted he had had the knife hidden up his sleeve and said he had been an alcoholic for 20 years, suffered from mental health issues and wanted treatment.

Mr Mark Stuart (defending) said had he not walked into Bargain Booze and asked for the police, it was probably highly unlikely he would have come to their attention.

The defendant had worked for the vast majority of his adult life but, after taking redundancy, was unemployed, his home was repossessed, he was in considerable debt and he drank more and more.

Mr Stuart said Ferguson’s mother had been diagnosed with cancer and the defendant had been told she had less than 12 months to live.

Sentencing, Judge Graham Knowles, QC, said the police and shop manager had been very brave and had shown considerable composure.