Send us your pictures, video, news and views by texting DST to 80360 or email us
Weekend cowboy in court on gun charge
A COURT heard how a cowboy re-enactment enthusiast brandished an imitation shotgun in the street.
Malcolm Jones got the weapon, which he used in weekend displays, during an argument with Polish neighbours in Craig Street, Darlington, in February.
Teesside Crown Court was told that the 42-year-old yelled at police: “It was f****** them across there, the Polish b*******. I wish they’d f*** off to where they belong.”
Witnesses say trouble started after Jones assaulted his partner in the street after a night out and the neighbours tried to intervene.
He pushed Marek Gurling to the ground and went inside to get the gun. When police were called by on-lookers, they found a “stand-off” between the men.
Jones said he had been assaulted by five people, and said to the group as he was led away threatened to burn their house down.
Christopher Baker, in mitigation, said: “He has little or no recollection of what happened that night, but it is clear he involved himself in alcohol-fuelled madness.
“This has led to his life falling apart. He has lost his partner – they have been together for some 12 years – and he has lost his daughter, who he stayed at home to look after. He accepts that he lost his temper, returned to the house, took the gun from a bedroom and stepped from his doorstep onto the pavement, holding it in the air.
“It would, no doubt, have been frightening for people watching this incident. Since this has occurred, he has stopped drinking entirely.”
Jones, now of Morpeth Avenue, Darlington, admitted two assaults, racially-aggravated harassment and possessing an imitation firearm with intent to cause fear.
Judge Peter Fox imposed a nine-month jail sentence, suspended for two years, with supervision and ordered him to carry out 200 hours of unpaid community work.
He told Jones: “This was a disgraceful episode caused, it would appear, solely by the excessive alcohol you had taken.”