Man who put crushed sedative into woman’s drink jailed for four months

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A man who crushed an illicit sedative into a woman’s lager without her consent has been jailed for four months.

Thomas Charles Jones, of 10 Sandholm Place, Yoker in Glasgow, admitted culpably and recklessly placing a crushed benzodiazepine into a woman’s drink without her knowledge.

He claimed he gave her the drug so they could ‘come off the high’ of cocaine and so they could get some sleep.

However, this explanation was not accepted by the sheriff and his motivation was labelled as unknown.

He was sentenced on March 27, however, the incident occurred on November 3, 2017.

The court heard at an earlier hearing on February 25 that 48-year-old Jones invited the woman back to his hotel room for a drink and there was a suggestion they might do some cocaine.

In Jones’s room, the woman accepted a can of lager, went to the toilet, then came back, picked up her can and took a sip.

Procurator fiscal Eoin McGinty said: ‘She immediately noticed a gritty texture in her mouth and saw residue of crushed power around the rim. She immediately challenged the man.’

After video recording the conversation on her phone, the woman left and took the can to the police. Analysis showed it contained a highly potent illicit drug called benzodiazepine. Jones believed it to be diazepam.

A proof of mitigation was heard at Oban Sheriff Court on Wednesday May 22 to unearth Jones’s motive.

His defence solicitor, Ross Anderson, said: ‘The party was over. He wanted to bring her down from the high and he wished to get to sleep. He foolishly decided to half a valium and even more foolishly to put half in her drink.’

He added that his client expressed remorse and recognised the seriousness and the stress his actions must have caused.

Procurator fiscal, Eoin McGinty, said: ‘There was always an easier alternative if the accused wanted to go to sleep – not ask her back in the first place, or when she was back, just ask her to leave. He chooses his moment and waited until she was out of the room. Why crush it up and put it in a can? Why not just say would you want this? She went the bathroom and came back, and he was in his pants.’

Sheriff Patrick Hughes said: ‘What is said on your behalf is that this was given to the complainer to allow her to come off the high. I don’t accept that explanation.

‘Your motivation must be left as unknown. The offence is extremely serious. The complainer put her trust in you and you violated that by putting an illegal drug in her drink. You did not know anything about the complainer. You did not know how she would react to the substance; if she had any underlying health issues.

‘If she left, she could have become injured or lost consciousness in the public street on a November night.’

‘The sentence must send a message to the public.’

Sheriff Hughes jailed Jones for four months.