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Kilrea man told police to shoot or he'd stab himself with knife, court told


Gareth Hyndman

Gareth Hyndman

Gareth Hyndman

A Kilrea man accused of attacking and threatening to kill two police officers has been remanded into custody.

Antrim Magistrates Court heard that residents in the Co Londonderry village were left shocked after Gareth Hyndman allegedly threatened to stab officers, had a gun pointed at him and aimed a firework at police.

Appearing at court via videolink from custody, the 44-year-old confirmed that he understood the eight charges against him.

Hyndman, of Coleraine Street, is charged with two counts of threatening to kill PSNI officers, attempting to cause them grievous bodily harm with intent, possessing a large kitchen knife with intent to cause GBH, possessing and using fireworks without a licence and possessing class B cannabis, all allegedly committed on November 2.

The court heard that just after 2.30am police called at Hyndman's home over an alleged breach of bail. When told he was going to be arrested, Hyndman allegedly "immediately bolted" to the kitchen and armed himself with a large knife.

Giving evidence during a contested bail application, a constable claimed Hyndman shouted: "I'm not going to f****** jail. I'll f****** kill you."

The officer shouted a warning to his colleagues that Hyndman was armed, drew his pistol and pointed it at Hyndman, ordering him to drop the knife.

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Hyndman allegedly told officers to shoot him or he would stab himself. As he advanced while brandishing the weapon, officers dragged a sofa to form a barrier between them and Hyndman, the court was told.

"At this point Mr Hyndman stabbed the kitchen door a number of times while shouting to police, 'I'm going to stab yous b*******'," claimed the officer.

The officer added that he then allegedly "threw the knife forcefully" at officers. It struck the living room curtains between them and the officers exited the block of flats, keeping Hyndman locked inside while summoning an armed response unit.

The court was told that while officers were waiting for the unit, Hyndman barricaded himself in his flat before donning a balaclava and throwing a firework from a window at the police outside.

When he threatened to light a large firework inside his flat, other residents were evacuated and the fire service was called.

The armed response unit arrived at 3.15am and forced entry to the flat within 45 minutes.

After he was shot with a stun gun three times, Hyndman was arrested.

During interviews he claimed that he only picked up the knife because the officers had drawn their guns.

He refused to answer questions over whether he had threatened them.

The interviews were cut short, the court heard, because Hyndman "became very agitated".

The court also heard that almost the entire incident was captured on body-worn cameras.

Objecting to bail, a constable said that Hyndman had tried to induce "suicide by cop - where he was goading the officer to shoot him" - telling the court that residents in the village "would not feel safe in their homes" if he was freed.

Defence counsel Liam McStay submitted that with strict conditions attached to a bail order, Hyndman could be freed, but District Judge Nigel Broderick said he was not satisfied "that the risks could be managed".

He remanded Hyndman into custody until November 23.

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