Man went to Washington snooker club 'wearing beanie and carrying hammer' to 'scare people'
A man went armed with a hammer to a Washington snooker club after being inflamed by a phone call from his upset partner inside.
Andrew Dowsett, 31, took the weapon to the Sky Lounge, in Oxclose Road, Columbia, at 11.23pm on Thursday, May 20.
But Dowsett, of Beckford, Teal Farm, did not make it past the entrance before being ushered away by an unidentified woman, venue CCTV footage revealed.
Police attended and found the hammer in the left leg of his trousers, magistrates in South Tyneside heard.
When interviewed after his arrest, he admitted he had intended to scare some club attendees.
The court heard Dowsett had struggled to readjust to life on Civvy Street after leaving the Armed Forces, during which time he served in Afghanistan.
Prosecutor Rehana Haque said: “He was arrested and cautioned on the suggestion of affray and possession of an offensive weapon.
“Police located a hammer in his left trouser leg, and there was also CCTV from the Sky Lounge.
“He was interviewed and shown the CCTV and asked about the hammer and what he intended to do with it.
“He said that he had received a call from his girlfriend who was upset and he went to the Sky Lounge to scare people.
“The CCTV showed the man involved was wearing a beanie and carrying a hammer.
“A female can be seen taking hold of the defendant. There was a risk of serious injury because he had a hammer. He made full admissions.”
Mrs Haque said the charge carried a nine-month jail term starting point.
Dowsett, who has four previous convictions, the last for wounding in 2013, pleaded guilty to possession of an offensive weapon.
Sandra Fife, defending, said: “Basically, he’s had a significant number of difficulties which all commenced when he served his country in Afghanistan.
“He still has difficulties and there are issues.”
Magistrates handed Dowsett an 18-month community order, with a requirement of 30 days of rehabilitation work with the Probation Service.
He was also ordered to carry out 120 hours of unpaid work and pay a £95 victim surcharge and £85 court costs.