Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 11°C

min temp: 9°C

Search

Bury St Edmunds: Suffolk prison officer ‘feared gun death’

PUBLISHED: 09:32 23 November 2012

West Suffolk Hospital

West Suffolk Hospital

Archant

A PRISON officer wept as she told a jury she feared she was about to be killed in an incident in Suffolk when a gunman demanded a prisoner in her custody be freed.

Kim Lockwood initially believed she was in a training exercise when a man pointed a handgun to her head outside West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds, a court was told.

The incident happened on the evening of January 25 and led to the escape of prisoner Andrew Farndon, who had been jailed for grievous bodily harm after fracturing his victim’s skull in a hammer attack.

Woolwich Crown Court heard he had been taken to the hospital’s accident and emergency ward after suffering a knife wound to his shoulder at Highpoint prison in Stradishall, Suffolk.

Farndon’s former jailmate Garry Cowan, 44, is standing trial accused of possession of a replica handgun with intent to cause fear of violence, and assisting an offender to escape, which he denies.

Ms Lockwood told the jury that she felt a gun being pressed against her head moments after stepping out of a taxi used to travel to the hospital.

Giving evidence behind a screen, Ms Lockwood said: “As we got out of the car I could obviously feel what I realised was the gun at my head. I was looking at Mr Farndon. He started saying ‘I’m sorry miss, let me go’.”

Asked by prosecutor Gregory Perrins what she thought was happening, Ms Lockwood replied: “At first, that it was a training thing work had set up ... but very quickly it went out of my head.”

Ms Lockwood told jurors she was ordered by the gunman to release Farndon, who was handcuffed to her at the time.

She alerted her colleague Chris Matson, who held the keys to the handcuffs, but had remained in the car unaware of the events unfolding outside, jurors heard.

Stowmarket Road in Great Blakenham was closed on Saturday night after a car left the road and crashed into a house.

Police have named the van driver who died in an accident on the Orwell Bridge on Friday as 67-year-old Michael (Mick) Rayner from Essex.

A new customer service office has opened in Sudbury as Babergh and Mid Suffolk councils prepare to move their main operations to Ipswich where they will share Suffolk’s Endeavour House headquarters.

Road crews from Highways England will be working at the following sites on East Anglia’s busiest roads over the next week – so this is where drivers can expect to find delays:

Colchester MP Will Quince was visibly moved as the House of Commons passed a new law giving parents the right to compassionate leave from work after suffering the tragedy of stillbirth.

The snooker area at Bears Pool & Snooker Club in Ipswich has now opened following the venue relaunch this summer.

A primary school student is counting down the days until the Bury St Edmunds Round Table fireworks display after winning an artwork competition to be the VIP.

Most read

Eating Out in the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Eating Out
supplement

View

Visit the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Visit the Broads
supplement

View

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24