Court told of shooting threat — (Geelong Advertiser)

SSRI Ed note: Man in 1-day (at least) withdrawal from antidepressants drinks, threatens a civil servant, gets 3 month jail term.

Original article no longer available

Geelong Advertiser

Joel Cresswell

September 18th, 2008

A DRUNKEN Norlane man told the staff of a Geelong MP he was going to shoot a public servant, a court heard yesterday.

A shirtless and intoxicated Michael Reid, 48, entered the office of Lara MP John Eren and threatened to shoot a Department of Human Services employee after he was denied access to his daughter, in March this year.

Mr Reid then used his hands to imitate pumping a pump-action shotgun.

The defendant repeated the threat to a drug and alcohol counsellor the following day.

Police prosecutor Senior-Constable Claire Murphy told Geelong Magistrates Court Mr Reid’s threats had violated a three-month suspended jail sentence.

But defence solicitor Susan Fridey said Mr Reid had since changed his drinking habits, sought anger management counselling and written a letter of apology to the threatened DHS employee.

Ms Fridey said the defendant had been unable to purchase anti-depressant medication on the day of the threat after he was denied funds from Centerlink.

He then vented at Mr Eren’s office situated across from Centrelink.

Sen-Constable Murphy said the defendant’s actions since the crime did not constitute the exceptional circumstances required to dodge the suspended sentence.

Magistrate Rosemary Carlin ordered Mr Reid to serve the three-month jail-term.

He was released on bail pending an appeal of his sentence.