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Court heard man stopped by police from jumping off bridge had been on ‘receiving end of bullying’

The district judge said: 'I don't understand these modern ways. I was always told sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.

Craigavon Magistrates Court

A man who drove the wrong way around a roundabout and was detained trying to jump off a motorway bridge has been handed a suspended prison sentence.

Court heard police tried to stop the 21-year-old after there were concerns for his own safety from his family.

Worciech Piotr Charzewski, of Enniskeen, Craigavon pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, failing to stop for police and possession of a bladed article at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.

It was heard that on October 9, police were contacted by the defendant’s family after he had left a suicide note before driving off on his motorcycle.

Officers searched and located Charzewski riding his motorcycle on the Portadown Road.

They attempted to get the defendant to stop at a vehicle checkpoint but he drove on.

Police made several attempts to get Charzewski to stop but he ignored them.

The defendant drove on the wrong side of the road and the wrong way around a roundabout to evade police.

He also made a turn onto a pedestrianised area to get away from the officers.

Charzewski did eventually stop on Boconnell Lane, Lurgan, before making off on foot.

Police located the defendant as he was attempting to jump off a motorway bridge.

Charzewski was arrested; during a search pliers, a kitchen knife and fluoxetine tablets were found on his person.

Defence solicitor Harry McCourt stated: “This was a very sad situation. Police were initially called over concerns this man might kill himself and, in fact, there was a letter left with his family.

“Between September and December, last year, he was in contact with mental health services, he is now in full-time employment with family support and instructs his mental health is stable.”

He added: “At them time he had been on the receiving end of bullying. He will be sad to lose his licence.”

District Judge Bernie Kelly said: “Firstly, we realise how serious carrying knives is and so the court has to reflect on that.

“He told probation he did not intend on hurting anyone, then why did he drive the wrong way around a roundabout or the wrong way down a road?”

She continued: “Mr Charzewski, whatever your thought process was this was a horrific escapade, you could have hurt a member of the public but you showed no concerns for this or the propensity of carrying a knife.

“Mr McCourt, I don’t understand these modern ways. I was always told sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me. I don’t get people getting into a tizzy over things people say.”

Charzewski was sentenced to three months in prison suspended for two years and was disqualified from driving for 12 months.

In addition, he was ordered to pay a fine of £200, along with the offender’s levy of £15, within eight weeks.

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