A benefits claimant who has not worked for 25 years trashed a Job Centre and brandished a knife after being told he would lose his payments if he didn’t try harder to get a job.
Gerald Taylor, 40, was locked in a 90-minute stand-off with police after being told his benefits could be axed at Fleetwood Job Centre in Lancashire.
Preston Crown Court heard Taylor was ‘aggressive and argumentative’ at an appointment on January 26 after advisors raised concerned about his efforts to find employment.
Taylor, from South Shore, Blackpool, threatened that the centre should be torched and stormed out of the building, before returning 45 minutes later with a hammer and smashing two windows.
The jobseeker, whose 59 previous convictions include burglary and arson, was disarmed by a passer-by, but later pulled out the knife as officers arrived at the scene.
Harry Pepper, prosecuting, said: ‘He was holding the…
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