A MAN who went up to a Dorset police station and told an officer he had a bomb strapped to his chest has been handed a suspended prison sentence.
Grant Webber, 45, appeared at Dorchester Crown Court to be sentenced for offences of placing an article with the intent to induce the belief that there was an explosive device and giving false information concerning a hoax bomb threat.
Prosecutor Tom Wright said that at about 9.50pm on May 24 Webber was seen outside Wareham Police Station by a Police Community Support Officer ‘loitering in the car park’.
He said when the defendant was approached by the officer he replied: “I have explosives strapped to my chest and I’m here to blow up the station.”
The officer could see what appeared to be a trigger in Webber’s hand with a wire or lead disappearing underneath the defendant’s t-shirt.
Mr Wright said there were also “bulges apparent underneath his t-shirt.”
The PCSO alerted two other officers, one of whom knew Webber and was able to get the defendant to co-operate.
Mr Wright said that Webber was ‘clearly intoxicated’ and when asked what was underneath his t-shirt replied that it was only some packets of rice and pasta.
Mr Wright said: “It became apparent to the officers this was a hoax rather than anything more sinister.”
Tim Shorter, mitigating, said Webber had acted out of feelings of animosity towards the police that related to previous experiences some years ago and since the offence he had been working to address his issues with alcohol.
He added that his client had made admissions in interview and entered guilty pleas to the offences at the earliest opportunity.
Webber, of Bells Orchard Lane, Wareham, was sentenced to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years, and was ordered to pay a fine of £1,000, compensation of £300 and costs of £425.
Recorder Rufus Taylor voiced his praise for the calm way the three officers had dealt with the situation on the night of the offence.
He said: “It seems to me they were phlegmatic and acted with great common sense.”