A man pointed an imitation firearm at two members of the public in a popular park and then went to a nearby police station still carrying the weapon in the hope police would “shoot him dead,” a court heard on Tuesday.
Aaron Tkaczyk (22), of The Cedars in Antrim, pulled out an imitation Glock handgun at the town’s Castle Gardens in July 13 last year before going to Antrim PSNI Station.
He was arrested and appeared in court for sentencing after previously pleading to one charge of carrying an imitation firearm in public.
A tearful Tkaczyk listened on as a prosecutor said that when interviewed the next day the defendant admitted his intention was to “create a situation whereby police would shoot him dead”.
He told police he believed if he pointed the gun at someone, the police would be phoned and officers would then kill him.
Defence barrister Neil Moore said it was a “sad” case and although his client works full-time as a production operator he had limited friends and a limited social life, but lives with his father and has his support.
Added Mr Moore: “The thinking appeared to be that if he waved this imitation firearm that police would arrive and take the step of actually shooting him dead”.
Mr Moore said Tkaczyk “sees no merit in anything other than getting up and going to work” and thinks he has nothing to be “happy for”.
Mr Moore said his client had shown remorse for the other individuals involved.
The barrister said his client had mental health problems and the only relationship the defendant had, ended in a court appearance for harassment.
District Judge Oonagh Mullan said it was an “extremely sad case” that a young man feels “life is not worth living” and that he had previously said he was not prepared to engage with any help offered by Probation.
However, in court Tkaczyk said he was prepared to take help.
The judge said it was an extremely serious incident for which he could be sent to jail and she said she would prefer that the defendant gets help to let him see that his “future is brighter”.
She imposed 18 months Probation with a condition that he engages in mental health courses as directed and the judge told the defendant she hoped he could “get out of the black hole you are in at the minute”.