Glasgow & West Scotland

Glasgow flat siege man admits attacking wife and police

Armed police during flat siege
Image caption Armed officers surrounded the flat during the siege

A man sparked a 10-hour siege in a busy Glasgow street after a fight with his wife, a court has been told.

John McDermott, 22, who had a stash of flash grenades, barricaded himself inside his Partick flat with a three-year-old girl, on 10 September.

Armed police and a bomb disposal squad were called to the property after the grenades were thrown from the window.

McDermott pled guilty to assaulting his wife and police officers. Sentence has been deferred for reports.

He also admitted breaching the peace by throwing items out of the window on Dumbarton Road, shouting and swearing and holding a knife to his throat.

The court heard the father-of-one appeared at the flat door holding the three-year-old under his arm and with a knife at his own throat.

Police negotiators talked him into handing over the girl, who was crying hysterically.

Dumbarton Road was cordoned off, businesses were unable to open for the day and people had to be evacuated from neighbouring houses.

Husband 'forgiven'

The court heard McDermott and his wife had argued over a text message after he arrived home at about 0600 GMT that morning.

Prosecutor Alasdair Youngston told the court: "The accused then punched his wife on the body, specifically on the stomach, then kneed her on the leg."

He added: "She ran upstairs to a neighbours house and told the neighbour what had happened."

The court heard McDermott opened the flat door to police at about 0700 GMT and threw a flash grenade which hit an officer on the chest.

McDermott agreed to release the young girl and on the instruction of police threw grenades out of the window.

The army bomb disposal unit were called from Edinburgh and police negotiators tried to talk McDermott out of the flat.

McDermott's lawyer, Jason Beltrami, told the court that Mrs McDermott had forgiven her husband and he had apologised for the assault on her.

He added that his client had suffered from depression for two years and added that the grenades were easily available on the internet and not prohibited.

Sheriff Charles McFarlane QC deferred sentence for background reports and told McDermott he was considering remitting the case to the High Court for sentence.

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