“I JUST wanted to die.”
Those were the words of a Brighouse man captured after an armed siege in Brighouse.
Bartholomew Buckley, 45, was shot by armed police officers during the domestic incident at a house in Brighouse last year. He has been given a suspended prison sentence for affray and common assault.
Buckley, who still has a metal cage around his upper right arm where he was wounded, challenged the armed officers to shoot him when they forced their way into the property in Whinney Hill Park in January last year.
Bradford Crown Court heard yesterday that Buckley, who had previous convictions for violence, had been involved in a row with his then partner Suzanne Bellows after they had shared a bottle of vodka.
She described him as behaving like a mad man and waving a Samurai sword around.
Prosecutor Dave Mackay told the court that during a call to the police, Buckley’s partner said he was killing her.
Buckley was said to have threatened to kill her that night and he also claimed that he was going to get shot dead.
Mr Mackay described how the police officers saw Buckley take off his T-shirt and shout “Shoot me” after they entered the house.
“An officer tried to Taser the defendant but missed,” said Mr Mackay.
Buckley was followed into a bedroom where he began throwing things at the officer and although one of the barbs of another Taser shot did hit him it had no effect.
Buckley ran towards the officer after throwing a vodka bottle at him and Mr Mackay said another officer armed with a sub-machine gun tried to shoot the defendant when he saw him reaching for his colleague’s pistol.
The first shot missed, but the armed officer fired again this time hitting Buckley in the upper left chest and his right arm.
The defendant fell down the stairs, but when he started to get up again he was hit with a baton round to the stomach causing him to fall to the ground where he was detained.
Miss Bellows was found in a bedroom crying and hysterical.
As the officers tended to Buckley's injuries he was tearful and apologetic saying: “I'm sorry. I made you do it. I just wanted to die”.
During a later police interview he again apologised to the officers and described the incident as something stupid that got out of hand.
The court heard that the proceedings against Buckley had been delayed because of legal problems and it was not until July this year that he entered his guilty pleas to the charges.
Barrister Andrew Petterson, for Buckley, said his client acknowledged that the offences would normally attract a lengthy prison sentence, but he explained how since the incident the defendant had obtained an injunction against Miss Bellows and had moved away from the Brighouse area.
He said Buckley had stopped his use of illicit drugs, reduced his drinking significantly and had progressed well under the supervision of the probation service.
Recorder Peter Babb described Buckley’s conduct that night as disgraceful, but accepted that the relationship with his partner had been a volatile one.
“The police who have to deal with violent incidents like this and other incidents have an extremely difficult job to do and you will appreciate that what you did and the way your reacted to the police involvement was totally out of order,” he told Buckley.
Buckley was sentenced to nine months in jail, suspended for a year, for the affray offence with a concurrent suspended one month prison sentence for the common assault on Miss Bellows.
As part of the order he will be supervised for the next 12 months.