Published: 11:45, 18 January 2018
A drunken man confronted a group of construction workers, hugging one before picking up a pick axe.
Then Lee Norris, 32, told the startled worker, Jamie Haskins: “Let’s have some pick-axe time,” before chasing him around the site wielding the weapon.
The men had been working in Rectory Road in Deal when the Norris staggered onto the private site at 1.20pm on July 24 last year.
Prosecutor Eleanor Scott-Davies told Canterbury Crown Court how the 32-year-old confronted Mr Haskins, asking about a disc cutter.
“It appeared he was very intoxicated and he was very difficult to understand before telling Mr Haskins, ‘I’ve lost everything. I’ve messed everything up’.
“He then shook Mr Haskins’ hand and hugged him before picking up the pick axe, telling him: ‘I’m going to stick this pick axe in your ******* head!’"
Norris, of Elizabeth Carter Avenue, Deal, later claimed he could remember nothing of the incident.
Ms Scott-Davies added that Norris couldn’t catch any of the workers during the chase but struck out at a machine instead, causing £600 worth of damage.
She said that an unknown man then walked up to Norris, disarmed him and put the pick axe into a wheelbarrow before walking away.
Norris then went to the Three Horseshoes pub, ordered a drink, telling staff police were searching for him, before sitting on a stool and falling asleep.
The judge, Recorder Catherine Brown, said the workmen “must have been absolutely terrified”.
Christopher Wray, defending, said that Norris had been in a “dark place” after problems over the custody of his children, which have now been resolved.
“He can’t remember anything but accepts he behaved in a disgraceful manner and is deeply ashamed,” he added.
Norris, who admitted a charge of affray, was given an eight-month jail sentence suspended for 18 months and ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid work for the community.
The judge told him: “What you did is totally unacceptable in a civilised society. The incident was prolonged and involved you wielding a large pick axe.
“I accept you had received news about your children, which you found distressing and you were not coping – but you made absolutely the wrong choice in drinking.”