Alcoholic asks for jail term so he can dry out

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An alcoholic who does not think he has a drink problem asked a sheriff to send him to jail so he could get off the booze.

Thomas Pearson (45) had threatened people in various locations on a number of occasions when he was in a drunken state.

Since he was not complying with the community orders he received for these offences and he took the unusual step of requesting a jail sentence.

Appearing at Falkirk Sheriff Court last Thursday, Pearson, 20 Seaforth Road, Langlees, previously admitted behaving in a threatening manner at the council housing office, Davids Loan, Bainsford, on June 16 last year and at Forth Valley Royal Hospital in Larbert the following day.

Stephen Biggam, defence solicitor, said: “He feels he does not have an alcohol problem, but people disagree with him on that. He thinks a short term at Her Majesty’s pleasure will help kick start his addressing of alcohol – he cannot move on until he does this.”

Sheriff Craig Caldwell said: “He has had many opportunities. If he continues along this road he will drink himself to death. There is utterly no point in continuing with this order.

“He suggests a period in custody may give him an opportunity to reflect on the matter and allow a period of sobriety to assist that reflection. That is an unusual request, but perhaps not in the extreme circumstances of this case.”

Addressing Pearson directly, he added: “The only outcome if you do not address these issues will indeed be the end of your life while consuming alcohol. Given these circumstances I am going to impose a prison sentence of six months from today’s date.

“That means in around three months time you will be released and that may give you time to withdraw from your alcohol dependency and reflect on your position. The community payback order will be in place and will remain in place.”

Sheriff Caldwell ordered a review to take place in 10 week’s time, to coincide with Pearson’s release from custody.

Forth Valley Addictions Support and Counselling (ASC) offers help to addicts. Visit www.asc.me.uk or call (01324) 874969.