A MAN who sent letters containing a suspicious white powder and death threats to social workers has been ordered to undergo psychiatric treatment.
Darren Siggins’ actions led to Queen Elizabeth Hospital spending nearly £20,000 on increased security after the white powder incident, Lynn magistrates heard on Wednesday.
Siggins, 38, a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic, admitted two charges of harassment and one of sending a hoax noxious substance.
The magistrates imposed a two- year community order including supervision and mental health treatment. Siggins, of Checker Street, Lynn, was also banned indefinitely from going to Priory House, Lynn, or contacting social workers except through a solicitor.
Yvonne Neill, prosecuting, said Siggins, who had five children taken into care, sent a series of threatening letters to social workers at Priory House. One contained a picture of a head with a knife through it and a death threat. Another threatened to cut a social worker’s throat.
On November 30 last year, white powder fell out of a letter sent to social workers at QEH. Some of the powder fell onto a member of staff who feared it was poisonous and raised the alarm. Police and firefighters attended at huge expense and staff were confined while checks were carried out on the powder, which turned out to be talcum powder, said Ms Neill.
After reading pre-sentence and psychiatric reports, the magistrates heard from Alison Muir, for Siggins. She said he did not want to go to prison and was willing to comply with the court orders and take medication to stabilise his condition.