Coventry & Warwickshire

Nuneaton bowling alley siege sentence reduced

Mugshot of David Clarke Image copyright Warwickshire Police
Image caption David Clarke admitted seven charges at a previous hearing

A man who took two people hostage at a bowling alley in a "suicide by cop" bid has had his sentence reduced.

David Clarke, 53, walked into MFA Bowl in Nuneaton during October half term, armed with a samurai sword, knife and shotgun.

Clarke, of Ryde Avenue, Nuneaton, was jailed in March for 12 years, with an extended licence period of five years.

His sentence was cut to 10 years at the Court of Appeal after judges said the original sentence was "excessive".

Mrs Justice May said while the serious offences had caused "lasting psychological harm" to the victims, Clarke had not inflicted any physical harm.

Lockdown

The bowling alley, in Bermuda Park, was put under police lockdown for more than four hours while Clarke carried out the siege on 22 October.

About 40 people were inside the bowling complex during the stand-off and dozens more were at the leisure park.

A previous hearing heard how Clarke and his ex-girlfriend both worked at the bowling alley and he was struggling after the breakdown of their relationship.

Clarke previously admitted seven charges, including two counts of false imprisonment and possessing a samurai sword and knife. He also admitted possessing a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence, possessing an imitation firearm with intent to cause an indictable offence and one count of criminal damage.

Clarke was originally sentenced at Warwick Crown Court in March. The court heard how he had wanted to "go out in a blaze of glory".

Image copyright PA
Image caption Police stormed the bowling alley on 22 October to bring the four-hour siege to an end

The extended licence period of five years remains in place.

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