Delivery driver threatened with BB gun after taking short-cut across garden

ipswich crown court

James Murray was sentenced at Ipswich Crown Court - Credit: Charlotte Bond

A householder man who threatened a delivery driver with a BB gun after he took a shortcut over his lawn has been given a suspended prison sentence.

James Murray stood on his driveway pointing the gun upwards and threatened  to “shove it up his a***” if the delivery driver did it again, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

Murray, 64, of Bowes Road, Wivenhoe, admitted using threatening behaviour on April 9 last year.

He was given an eight-week prison sentence suspended for 12 months and ordered to do 80 hours' unpaid work.

He was also given a 10-day rehabilitation activity requirement.

Juliet Donovan, prosecuting, said the driver was delivering a parcel to Murray’s neighbour in Bowes Road, Wivenhoe, when he came out of his semi-detached house and said: “Are you delivering here or not?”

When the man said he wasn’t Murray swore at him and told him to get off his property.

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The driver delivered the parcel to Murray’s neighbour and then drove down the road to make another delivery, said Miss Donovan.

As he got out of his van he heard a shout and saw Murray standing on his driveway holding a BB gun.

“He was waving it in the air with the barrel pointing it upwards,” said Miss Donovan.

She said Murray had told the delivery driver that next time he came back he would get the gun “up his a***”.

Miss Donovan said the delivery driver had been “upset rather than scared” and had tried to film Murray with the gun.

Murray told police the delivery driver always walked across his property to deliver parcels and he couldn’t understand why he didn’t use his neighbour’s driveway.

Donal Lawlor, for Murray, said his client had no previous convictions and had been working as a school bus driver.

He said there had been nothing separating the lawns of houses in the street and shortcuts were often taken across lawns.

Since the incident with the delivery driver picket fences had been put to separate the lawns.

He said that prior to coronavirus home delivery drivers taking short cuts hadn’t been a problem but since the pandemic there had been an “explosion” of home deliveries resulting in a daily stream of people crossing lawns.

Mr Lawlor said the BB gun did not have a gas canister in it when it was produced during the incident.