Drug user threatened guard with needle at Hucknall store

Mansfield Magistrates Court.
Mansfield Magistrates Court.

A heroin user who threatened a security guard with a syringe at a Hucknall store has been threatened with a jail sentence, a court heard.

Nathan Walden scuffled with the guard at the Sainsburys store, on Watnall Road, on October 31.

Prosecutor Robert Carr said: “The guard knew Mr Walden was wanted for thefts in the store. He took hold of him and took him to the floor.

“He noticed he had a needle in his hands.

“In police interview, he accepted that he made no verbal threats, but his body language was enough to cause the security guard to fear for his own safety.”

Walden, 26, of no fixed abode, admitted threatening behaviour when he appeared at Mansfield Magistrates Court, on Monday.

The court heard he tested positive for drugs after he was arrested for theft on August 18, but failed to turn up for appointments on August 23 and September 6.

Melanie Hoffman, mitigating, said: “He had been to the Co-Op store to use the needle exchange. He was waiting for a friend to take the needles.

“He was approached by the security guard. There wasn’t any conversation. The guard was quite abrupt and grabbed hold of him.

“He accepts pushing the security guard. But he denies making any comments.”

She said Walden’s father died suddenly in Bulgaria a year ago, but his family had been unable to recover his body.

“He hasn’t been able to cope,” said Ms Hoffman. “When his mother and brother found out, that instantly marked the end of their relationship, and they wiped their hands of him.”

Walden had begun using heroin and crack cocaine and had funded his drug use with thefts, Ms Hoffman said.

“Since then his life has been chaotic. He has been sleeping on friends’ sofas and in sheds,” she said.

“He does want the opportunity to turn his life around.”

He was given 16 weeks, suspended for 12 months, and was ordered to carry out a six month drug rehabilitation programmes, and ten days of a rehabilitation activity requirment.

He was warned that he would go to prison if he breached the order.

He must pay £100 compensation to the security guard.