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Heroin addict Wesley Gurney who injected himself in Canterbury park claimed it was a painkiller

Harriet Kelly was found dead in a tent
Harriet Kelly was found dead in a tent

A jobless junkie pulled down his trousers and injected himself in the groin near a play park in Canterbury.

Wesley Gurney, 35, was topless and swigging from a can of cider when he arrived at Canterbury Magistrates' Court - where it was claimed he had been injecting a painkiller.

Julie Farbrace, prosecuting, said the incident happened in Dane John Gardens at 6pm on Thursday, May 2.

"He was seen to pull down his tracksuit bottoms, inject himself in the groin, pull his trousers up and then rejoin a group of friends," said Miss Farbrace.

"It is something unpleasant for other members of the public to see. It is behaviour which cannot be accepted by members of the public."

Gurney, of Whitstable Road, said he was not injecting illegal drugs but had bought Co-codamol from a chemist because he was in pain after suffering broken toes and a cracked ankle.

He said he was on methadone, the drug used to wean addicts off heroin.

"Because of that, they can't prescribe me anything else," he said.

"I was in a lot of pain and I know I should have taken it orally, but it wasn't working quickly enough so I injected it.

"I came out of prison last July and had been living rough for 11 months, but now I'm in a hostel.

"Before that I have either been on the streets or in prison. I'm trying to make my life better and I know that doing this was wrong. I'm embarrassed and sorry."

Canterbury's Dane John Gardens
Canterbury's Dane John Gardens

Police had initially charged Gurney with causing a public nuisance by injecting substances into his groin near a children's play park.

But magistrates withdrew the charge and instead gave Gurney a six-month bindover to keep the peace in the sum of £50.

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