Jailed for two years over hospital knife nightmare
A drunk carrying a knife has been jailed after threatening hospital staff.
Paul Connelly was bleeding from a face wound when he turned up at Hairmyres Hospital’s accident and emergency unit and muttered about “having to clean up the streets”.
Police were contacted after he warned a receptionist he would“come through that window”and cause problems.
Connelly, 29, appeared from custody via videolink at Hamilton Sheriff Court on Friday.
He admitted possession of a knife and threatening or abusive behaviour at the hospital in the early hours of May 29.
Connelly also admitted abusive behaviour towards his girlfriend over a six-week period in March and April that included assaults and damaging property.
Mairi-Clare McMillan, prosecuting, said Connelly appeared to be intoxicated when he arrived at A&E at 3.25am. He was bleeding from a cut to his face.
Ms McMillan told the court:“He was acting erratically, stating he had a knife in his bag and telling staff to phone the police.
“He then became more aggressive and told the receptionist‘I’ll come through that window and then you will have a problem’.
“Connelly produced a large kitchen knife from his bag and began pacing up and down A&E, making bizarre comments such as‘Why should I be left to clean up the streets?’
“Police officers attended and he could be heard shouting. He was arrested and taken to Cathcart police station.”
Defence agent Andy Thomson said his client, a trained chef, moved back to East Kilbride eight months ago after a spell working in Portsmouth.
Unfortunately, he has“some alcohol and drug issues”.
Connelly claimed he meant no harm to staff when he went to the hospital.
Mr Thomson explained:“A group of youths had set upon him. He was assaulted, but he was able to disarm an individual who had a knife.
“He put the knife in his bag and walked for 20 minutes to the hospital.
“He was agitated and asked staff to phone the police. He produced the knife and tried to explain what had happened.”
Referring to the separate domestic abuse charge, Mr Thomson described the relationship with the woman as “toxic”and claimed there was violence on both sides.
Sheriff Alasdair MacFadyen said the hospital incident was of concern, but he took account of the accused’s“unusual mental condition”and that he appears to be taking steps to address it.
Connelly was jailed for a total of two years, backdated to May 29 as he has been in custody since then.
He was also given a non-harassment order, banning him from contacting his victim for three years.