Leighton Buzzard man jailed for threatening someone with a knife - Luton

28/02/2014

A Leighton Buzzard doorman has been praised by a Judge for the sensible and brave way he dealt with a drunk suicidal man armed with a large knife.

The knifeman, Derek Petherick, had already tried to lure police to shoot him, when he turned up outside the Litten Tree pub on the Saturday before Christmas last year.

Lots of revellers were milling outside when they saw Petherick pull out the large kitchen knife from a plastic bag and challenge door steward Zoheb Hussan.  For several minutes the doorman kept Petherick at bay by protecting himself with an advertising hoarding, and then brought him to the ground when police arrived.

Petherick, 40, was very drunk at the time and had no memory of the incident. He watched the CCTV footage from the dock at Luton Crown Court on Friday, 28 February 2014.  He said his last memory was going to the railway station intending to throw himself under a train.

Petherick, of Bassett Road, Leighton Buzzard, pleaded guilty to threatening someone with a knife and was jailed for 30 months.

Prosecutor, Daniel Lister said Mr Hussan, police officers and members of the public were all in fear of being stabbed.  The barrister said the defendant had phone police twice during the night of 21/22 December last year.

"He told them he had a weapon and was willing to use it, and wanted to get shot by police.  He was then seen outside the Litten Tree and produced the knife with an eight inch blade. It was a very busy night as it was the last Saturday before Xmas," said Mr Lister.

Mark Nicholls, defending said Petherick had suffered a very violent upbringing which had led to mental health issues and alcohol misuse.

"He just wanted to kill himself and cannot explain the incident at all."

Recorder Robin Allen QC told Petherick: "It was only through good luck and good fortune that no one got cut. You had an extremely threatening and dangerous weapon."

He said Mr Hassan should be awarded £250 from public funds for "dealing with a very nasty situation very sensibly. He was exceptionally brave."

Please note - all court copies are provided by South Beds News Agency,  who retain the copyright for all articles published.