A former serviceman with PTSD has been fined after he threatened his neighbours during a dispute

A former Armed Forces’ serviceman who is suffering with post-traumatic stress disorder has been fined after he threatened his neighbours.

By Jon Cooper
Thursday, 13 June, 2019, 16:48
Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on June 12 how Philip Gaunt, 43, of New Street, North Wingfield, Chesterfield, was abusive and banged on his neighbours’ window leaving a couple scared for their safety because he claimed they were noisy.

Prosecuting solicitor Becky Allsop said the complainants live in the same flats as the defendant and there had been no previous problems.

She added that Gaunt knocked on the couple’s window asking the male occupant to come out and he came back to ask the same occupant to come out again and he shouted he was going to kill him as he pointed at him.

Both complainants had been so concerned, according to Mrs Allsop, that they thought their window was going to be put through.

The male complainant stated they had never had any formal complaints from any of the neighbours about noise, according to Mrs Allsop.

The female complainant also stated that Gaunt told her he had no problem with her but he was still abusive to her partner and both complainants revealed that they were terrified.

Mrs Allsop said that when Gaunt was arrested he was aggressive towards the police and the defendant claimed there had been problems with his neighbours after they had moved in.

He added that he has struggled with PTSD after his time in the Forces and he cannot cope with loud noises.

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Gaunt pleaded guilty to using threatening behaviour after the incident on May 22.

Karl Meakin, defending, said Gaunt has expressed remorse and apologises for his actions.

He added: “This is a matter that goes beyond a normal situation with a neighbour upset about noise.”

Mr Meakin explained that Gaunt is seeing a psychiatrist for PTSD after he had served with the Forces in Northern Ireland.

Gaunt had been drinking to get “black-out drunk” to sleep through the noise, according to Mr Meakin, and things ended-up moving “in another direction”.

Magistrates sentenced Gaunt to a nine-month community order with a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement.

He was also fined £50 and must pay £85 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.