Rossendale Free Press
Ex-soldier who threatened to shoot MP is sent to a mental health unit
AMAN who sent hundreds of threats and insults to an MP has been sent to a mental health unit for treatment.
Michael Glendinning, 56, of Shawforth, bombarded the MP with malicious and abusive voicemails and emails in which he threatened to shoot the MP and asked him to fight.
He also made”utterly unfounded and unpleasant allegations” that Mr Berry was a paedophile and approached the politician when he was with his family in a cafe and a supermarket.
The Honorary Recorder of Preston Judge Robert Altham said Glendinning first contacted Mr Berry in 2012 when he had a dispute with the HMRC.
Glendinning was issued a cheque, however he was not satisfied with the outcome and continued to contact the MP.
Judge Altham, sentencing at Preston Crown Court, said: “What was at first persistent went on to become increasingly abusive and threatening and the police were engaged to advise the defendant and tell him to cease contact, but nonetheless the defendant carried on the intimidation including approaching the victim and his family at a cafe and a supermarket.
“This was plainly escalating conduct by the end of 2019 and early 2020 the defendant was leaving violent and abusive voicemails and emails - sometimes containing malicious and false information of the most personal nature.”
Between March 2020 and May 2021 Mr Berry’s office used a system to monitor and record voicemails. Glendinning left 234 messages with at least 63 between August 5 and 13.
The defendant also sent numerous emails to the MP.
Judge Altham said: “They contained horribly insulting language which no-one should have to hear about themselves.
“They make utterly unfounded and unpleasant allegations against Mr Berry and are hostile and threatening in tone. They make gratuitous and insulting comments about Mr Berry’s personal appearances and seek to insult him in every way possible.” Comments included telling the M P “you’re a f*** nobody” and asking him for a fight.
Glendinning said: “You bring the f ****** CTU (Counter Terrorism Unit) around here with their MP5s and Glocks. It doesn’t bother me.
“I’ve been knocking around with paras - I’ll do you over.”
He made reference to his military background and threatened to “put a gun up his a*** and shoot him.”
Mr Berry was so worried by the messages he feared for the safety of his family.
He said his role as an MP meant his home address was publicly available and he often spends time away from home, leaving his wife and children alone at the family home.
Glendinning was assessed by two psychiatrists who said he was suffering from a mental disorder which had psychotic elements warranting hospital treatment.
A bed has been secured for him in a mental health unit where he will be treated.
Judge Altham made a hospital order for him to comply with treatment.