JAILED: Thug who threatened to “wrap” computer screen round the heads of council staff

Canterbury City Council's Military Road office

A homeless man who threw a computer monitor and chair at city council staff is starting a prison sentence.

Patrick Weller, 31, became aggressive in the authority’s Military Road office after accusing workers of failing to properly help him.

A court heard that he threatened to “wrap” the screen around officers’ heads before throwing it and a chair at them.

Council chief executive Colin Carmichael said: “Council staff wake up in the mornings determined to help people and do not deserve to be attacked or verbally abused for simply doing their job.

“This incident left our officers shocked, shaken and distressed. We take a zero-tolerance approach to attacks on our staff and those who behave in this way can be certain there will be consequences.”

Colin Carmichael

Weller was jailed for 18 weeks at Folkestone Magistrates Court.

He had admitted destroying or damaging property at the council’s offices and was also sentenced for damaging a police cell in September last year for which he had originally received a conditional discharge.

The council says its staff are often targets of attacks, especially those in the enforcement team.

On the same day Weller was arrested, a builder threatened to kill an enforcement officer in Canterbury’s Rosemary Lane car park.

In 2017, there were 13 serious incidents involving enforcement officers including:

A man issued with a fixed penalty notice for littering in the St Radigund’s car park who drove his car at an enforcement officer, threatened him and stole his radio;

A man who received a two-month prison sentence suspended for two years after punching an enforcement officer in the face in an unprovoked attack in Station Road West, Canterbury;

A driver who stormed out of the Carpenter’s Arms pub in Tower Way, Canterbury, and shoved a parking ticket into an enforcement officer’s back.

Mr Carmichael added: “Many people think our enforcement officers are fair game especially when commenting on social media.

“What they fail to realise is the team is dedicated to improving the quality of life for everyone in the district and tackling some of our most-complained about issues. They tackle littering, try to catch the vandals who daub graffiti and try to prosecute the flytippers who spoil our countryside.

“At the same time, parked cars that break the rules have a huge impact on other motorists by causing congestion, creating danger in and around the school gates, stopping buses getting through, and could pose a serious problem for the emergency services who are racing on blue lights to save lives.

“If you don’t want a ticket, don’t be antisocial and don’t break the rules.”


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