Man behind bars. Jail. Prison. Prisoner. Hands. Generic image.
Man behind bars. Jail. Prison. Prisoner. Hands. Generic image.

Addict’s fake bomb threat to store staff

A MAGISTRATE slammed a self-confessed drug addict as behaving like a "deadbeat" after he went on a violent meth-crazed rampage across the city and threatened store employees with a fake bomb.

Alan John Coupland, 50, tried to explain his actions to Magistrate Ross Mack from custody on Wednesday after spending more than 60 days locked up for the string of crimes he committed across two months.

The former fitter and turner was in the midst of a drug psychosis when he told staff at a Cash Converters store that he had a bomb and he "knew where they all lived" on Christmas Eve.

Five days later, Coupland assaulted an employee at a Townsville NightOwl store and committed a further public nuisance at the Townsville Library. His crazed behaviour came to a head at the Townsville University Hospital on February 14 when he threatened a security guard with a stool.

Mr Mack said staff at the hospital did not deserve this type of treatment while trying to do their job and look after people.

"You don't want lunatics at the hospital doing what he did," he said.

Coupland's defence lawyer, Tracy Brown, said his behaviour was worsened by a bipolar condition, schizophrenia and a drug addiction.

Ms Brown said Coupland first started using drugs when he was 12 years old and had spiralled into drug addiction after achieving a successful career in telecoms and as a fitter and turner.

Coupland added similar offences to his five-page criminal history when he pleaded guilty at Townsville Magistrates Court to public nuisance, assault and going armed to cause fear charges.

He was sentenced to nine months' jail, suspended after serving three months for an operation period of 12 months. Convictions were recorded.

Originally published as Addict's fake bomb threat to store staff