Court heard how he had ‘snapped’ over a bin dispute
A drunk landscape gardener who “snapped” after a dispute with his neighbours started up his chainsaw outside their home.
A court today heard that luckily Lee Brady, 48, of Cockshead Road, Gateacre, did not attack anyone with it and in fact his behaviour only came to light after he himself had called the police making false claims.
Joshua Sanderson-Kirk, prosecuting, told Liverpool Crown Court that on August 8 last year Brady rang the police saying he had an argument with neighbours. He claimed they had threatened to kill him, used weapons and threatened him with a dog.
Officers arrived to his home and found he was drunk and there were bottles of beer and one of vodka lying on the floor of his apartment.
Enquiries were made of other residents in the complex and one, who did not want to make a statement, told of an argument between Brady and others in the communal area and he was seen to leave to leave his flat and the sound of a chainsaw running in the corridor was then heard.
Mr Sanderson-Kirk said that there was no sign of damage or injury and police went back to speak to Brady again and he said his chainsaw was in the other room. It was found to be warm to the touch, indicating recent use.
Mr Sanderson-Kirk said: “He was arrested and taken to custody and responded when charged, ‘Don’t drink kids’.”
He admitted he had turned it on “because he had been furious. He said he was regretful and had been stupid.”
Brendan Carville, defending, said that Brady has a landscape garden business and earns £35,000 annually. He had stopped drinking for a long time but his father died recently and because of the impact of that loss he started again.
He told court: “Brady said he had been cutting down an apple tree in the garden of his ground floor flat and used the chain saw which he uses in his work.
“The flat upstairs was being used by a number of young people who were rowdy and stacking bins up outside his front door and he snapped.”
Brady, who has no similar convictions, had pleaded guilty to possessing an offensive weapon and threatening behaviour.
Mr Carville said, “He is a decent man” who would co-operate with the probation service.”
Judge David Potter said that although Brady did not intend to use the chainsaw “such was your intoxication and the heightened state of arousal you were in, a confrontation with others may have been out of your control and therefore the court does say this offence was so serious only a custodial sentence is appropriate.”
But he ruled that because of his personal mitigation and the realistic prospect of rehabilitation he would suspend a 12 month prison term for two years.
The judge said he had started the chainsaw up in temper and in drink with intent to use alarm or distress.
He added: “But there is no question of any intention on your part to use that chainsaw to damage property or worse still to use it towards any person.”
Judge Potter ordered the defendant to carry out 90 days unpaid work and 25 days rehabilitation activities and to pay £340 prosecution costs.