Patient triggers security alert after tampering with oxygen supply

Blackpool Magistrates' Court
Blackpool Magistrates' Court
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A patient who was seen tampering with oxygen supply equipment at a hospital had psychiatric problems after being introduced to legal highs at Wymott Prison a court was told.

Daniel Walsh caused a security alert at Blackpool Victoria Hospital when he messed about with medical gear, drank cider from a can and used a walking frame which did not belong to him.

He told one security officer he would knock him out and struggled on the floor at the Accident and Emergency unit as officers tried to control him.

Walsh, a former security officer, aged 38, of Clifton Green, Clifton, near Kirkham, pleaded guilty to threatening behaviour. A charge of assault against him was dropped.

He was sentenced to a 12 months community order with up to 10 days rehabilitation to be supervised by the probation service, fined £20 with £150 costs and ordered to pay a £150 court charge, £60 victims’ surcharge plus £50 compensation by Blackpool magistrates.

Presiding magistrate, Craig Lavender, told him: “This was a very unfortunate incident, taking place in a hospital with members of the public and nurses present.”

Prosecutor, Adrian Hollamby, said on September 22 at 6.30pm police were called to a ward in Victoria Hospital’s casualty unit. Medical staff complained that Walsh had been drinking from a can of cider and using a Zimmer frame that was not his.

The prosecutor said: “A security officer asked him to behave. He then started tampering with equipment and the oxygen supply in a cubicle.”

Walsh was again told to behave, but he became aggressive and started swearing. He had to be taken to the floor and two security officers struggled to control him.

Hugh Pond, defending, said at the time of the offence Walsh had psychiatric problems which arose after he was introduced to the legal high of Spice when he was in Wymott Prison. Walsh conceded his behaviour was unacceptable. He admits he was rude to a security officer. Walsh said his legs were swiped out from under him and the officers jumped on his back.

Mr Pond added: “He does not take drugs and he has also stopped drinking.”