Racist cancer patient threatened to kill at Sunderland medical centre

Monkwearmouth Health Centre, Dundas Street, Sunderland
Monkwearmouth Health Centre, Dundas Street, Sunderland
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A PATIENT hurled racist abuse at his doctor and left her fearing she was about to be violently attacked.

Cancer sufferer Richard Symington warned he would kill someone after GP Ranjani Balaraman refused to give him a prescription for codeine as he was a new patient at the Monkwearmouth Medical Centre and she did not have his records.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the 49-year-old, who has more than 120 previous convictions, threatened to smash the windows at the practice and warned: “I am going to go outside and kill someone”.

The court heard the doctor called for a nursing assistant to sit in during the consultation on April 29 and both women were left convinced violence would be used on them.

During the stand-off Symington, who claims he has just months to live, made racist slurs towards the GP and another Indian medic at the practice.

Symington continued to hurl abuse when he was ushered out of the doctor’s room and threatened he would stab someone as shocked patients, including children and pensioners, watched in horror.

He was arrested and admitted a racially aggravated public order offence.

The doctor was left in such fear she left work that day via an alternative entrance, with an escort.

Mr Recorder John Aitken sentenced Symington, of Bridge Street, Tow Law, Durham, to six months’ imprisonment, suspended for 12 months, with supervision and alcohol treatment programme.

The judge told him: “Everyone understands that in this country the health system is under a great deal of stress. Doctors and other front-line workers have a job to do on behalf of the rest of us.

“Everyone in the country relies upon those people doing their job.

“It is of no help to anyone if they spend some of their time being abused for doing nothing other than turn up to work. Everyone is entitled to turn up at work and be treated with respect, everyone is entitled to respect, regardless of their race.

“Anyone who behaves like this towards health service workers can expect to go to prison.”

The court was told Symington has since been told his cancer is now terminal and he has just months to live.