Police ordered man to 'drop to his knees' during Larne 'stand-off'

Police ordered man to 'drop to his knees' during Larne 'stand-off'

POLICE ordered a man 'armed' with a screwdriver to 'drop to his knees' in Larne town centre following a 'stand-off', a court heard.

Daniel Brownlee (25), with an address listed as Curran Road in the town, admitted possessing a screwdriver as an offensive weapon at Main Street on the evening of March 13.

He also admitted assaulting a police officer, whom he spat at whilst being taken to a cell; and he caused criminal damage to a PSNI cell van by urinating and leaving blood inside.

A prosecutor told Ballymena Magistrates Court that at 6.05pm police received  a call from Simon Community hostel in Larne about the defendant being abusive to staff and "they had to lock themselves in the office".

He then went to Main Street "armed with a screwdriver".

When police stopped Brownlee he raised the screwdriver "in an aggressive manner" towards officers.

The prosecutor said: "He was instructed to drop the weapon and get on his knees otherwise force would be used. After a short stand-off the defendant dropped to his knees and dropped the weapon which was secured then by police".

A defence lawyer said drug addiction was the background to the offending.

District Judge Nigel Broderick said the defendant had a "poor record".

The judge said the cases before the court were "nasty".

Jailing the defendant for three months, Judge Broderick added: "Dangerous to be armed with a screwdriver and then spitting at a police officer. And his actions in a police cell van do him no credit".