A drunk woman vowed to cut her ex-partner’s throat with a meat cleaver and threatened police officers when they tried to arrest her, a court heard.
Armed police and an ambulance went to flats in Strood after reports of a possible stabbing there.
When they arrived Sarah McClucke was brandishing the 20cm long blade, causing officers to fear for their safety.
A meat cleaver. Stock picture
The 44-year-old mother, who works with autistic adults, walked free from court with a community order after admitting affray. She will have to complete 170 hours unpaid work.
Maidstone Crown Court heard a firearms unit was despatched to Lily Court in Tamar Drive on the evening of November 14 last year but was called away before entering.
Prosecutor Martin Yale said shouting could be heard from an upstairs flat.
McClucke opened the door and was holding the cleaver at shoulder height “as if ready to use it”.
She told the officers: “I am going to ------- kill him. I am going to cut his throat.”
Her former partner John McClucke was calmly sitting in a chair in the flat. An officer went in but feared for his safety and felt trapped in the hallway.
The case was heard at Maidstone Crown Court
He told her to put down the weapon and took out his Pava incapacitant spray when she refused.
“The defendant said she was going to kill somebody,” said Mr Yale.
“She was still holding the cleaver in a raised position as if ready to use it.
“Another officer was shouting to him to get out. She took a couple of steps back, giving him enough space to get out. She discarded the knife behind the front door.
“Officers took hold of her and pulled her out of the flat. She was still in an emotional state and unstable, still shouting threats to kill people.”
Mr McClucke’s new partner Emma Turner was in the flat shouting and screaming and police feared she would grab the cleaver and use it. She was abusive.
McClucke, meanwhile, declared her ex-partner had been “giving it” and she was going to “chop his ------- head off”.
“I am going to kill him. I am going to cut his throat...” - Sarah McClucke
Judge Michael Carroll told her it had been “a quite frightening incident” and it could have been even worse if the police had not dealt with it in a calm and measured way.
“They chose not to use weapons at their disposal,” he said. “They are to be complimented on their forethought because you clearly had been drinking.”
The judge said he detected remorse in the mum-of-three, who is now back with Mr McClucke, and he was pleased she had stopped drinking.
“I don’t need to consider imposing any kind of custodial sentence today,” he added.
Judge Carroll warned if the order was breached he had nine months imprisonment in mind.
“I am confident you are sensible enough with family responsibilities and a good work record you will be able to carry out this order and you won’t be seeing me again.”
Patrick Dennis, defending, said McClucke had gone to her partner’s flat to help him move some furniture out. It was civil at first but they started drinking and an argument developed.
“She didn’t try to use the meat cleaver,” he said. “It was merely brandished. She is hard working. She has three children and an aged mother. She does something worthwhile helping autistic adults.”
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