Norwich man put air pistol to head of city support worker

Timothy Dempsey.

Timothy Dempsey. PIC: Norfolk Police - Credit: Norfolk Police

A man pointed an air pistol at the head of a Norwich support worker who calmly tried to talk him down after he  became upset over a mould problem in his flat.

Timothy Dempsey, 68, who has a history of mental health problems,  was depressed and anxious and when the Norwich City Council worker inquired about his welfare he pointed the weapon at her head and said he wanted to kill people that had done him wrong, Norwich Crown Court heard.

Police were called and Dempsey was arrested.

Stephen Spence, prosecuting, said the weapon when analysed was found to be a high powered prohibited Crossman .22 calibre  air weapon.

Dempsey, 68, of Forester Close, Norwich, admitted having an air weapon in Norwich with intent causing another to believe that unlawful violence would be used against them on November 4, last year.

Jailing him for a five year mandatory term, Judge Andrew Shaw said that the victim was a support worker, who had been concerned for his welfare and his deteriorating mental health.

He said: "You put the gun to her head and she states you pulled an angry face."

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He said that she had tried to calm him down and managed to call police.

In a statement the victim had said she hoped that Dempsey would get help.

Judge Shaw accepted Dempsey had a number of problems and suffered from a delusional disorder, and had also been drinking heavily on the day of the offence but said he had no alternative but to impose the minimum mandatory sentence.

Andrew Oliver, for Dempsey, said that he had mental health problems and said it was a cry for help.

He said that he had bought the air pistol more than 10 years ago, in North Walsham, and did not have any  ammunition for it.

He said he had kept the gun as he was hoping he could sell it to raise cash.

He was suffering from anxiety and depression at the time and was obsessed about the state of his accommodation, which had a mould problem.

"This was a cry for help."

Mr Oliver added: "He was pre-occupied with the mould in his flat."

He said that he had only pointed the gun for a brief period of time.


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