Diabetes patient made death threats to Norwich hospital staff

The patient made the threats at the Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital.

The patient made the threats at the Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital. - Credit: Evening News © 2009

A diabetes patient of 34 years has been given a restraining order after making threats to hospital staff, having received the wrong prescription.

At his trial at Norwich Magistrates Court yesterday, Kevin Cushion, 64, who has 22 different medications, said he had been afraid of 'death by ignorance', and had become 'agitated' when staff at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital were unable to help on August 14 when he ran out of insulin.

The court heard from employees Dawn Hauson and Catherine Beales, who were so afraid Cushion would carry out his threats they called security and the police.

'We take behaviour towards any public servant more seriously because they do not deserve, under any circumstances, to be treated the way these two ladies were,' said prosecutor Oliver Haswell.

Ms Hauson told the court Cushion had been flagged as a 'difficult patient', but denied that influenced the way she handled him.

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Ms Beales, manager of the diabetes clinic, took over the phone after Cushion called a third time.

'I answered the phone because I have a duty of care,' she said.

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'There was lots of swearing and he explained we were trying to kill him by not giving him his prescription. He then said he knew where I was and he would kill me.'

Challenged by Chris Brown, defending Cushion, Ms Beales said the threat had been 'made perfectly clear'.

Cushion, of Market Street, Tunstead, told magistrates he had run out of insulin that day, and if he didn't get help he would 'slip into a coma'.

'They kept on guessing my medication, and every month it would be wrong,' he said, admitting he had made 'lots of complaints' against the clinic staff.

Finding Cushion guilty of sending indecent or grossly offensive communications, the bench gave him a two year restraining order banning him from using any threatening or abusive behaviour or words when engaging with any NHS staff.

He was also given a 12 week prison sentence suspended for 12 months, and will pay £620 costs and an £80 victim surcharge.

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