Norwich mum jailed after sending threatening notes containing white powder to neighbour
08:51 21 January 2014
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A mother made hoax bomb calls to Crimestoppers and sent threatening notes containing white powder through the post, to try to terrify her neighbour, and her family to move out, a court heard.
Sadie Lake, 39, in what a judge described as a “campaign” of threats also made a hoax bomb threat to Wymondham police headquarters, and sent a message to Crimestoppers to say there would be someone with explosives in a handbag, in Prince of Wales Road, Norwich Crown Court was told.
Nicola Devas, prosecuting, said one letter Lake sent to the neighbour in Motum Road, Norwich, contained white powder, along with a note with the word “die.”
She also sent a letter to the husband of the neighbour, again containing white powder with the words “Get out.”
Ms Devas said when analysed the powder turned out to be cornflour.
Although the threats were all hoaxes, she said the bomb threats had to be referred to the counter terrorist officers to evaluate.
“So it is simply not just the time local police officers have to devote to such threats.”
She said Lake was arrested and said she had been “playing a game” with police.
“She said she enjoyed sending the messages at the time”
Although the court heard that Lake now realised the seriousness of what she did.
Lake of Motum Road, Norwich, admitted communicating false information with intent and sending a noxious substance.
The offences took place between February and June last year.
Jonathan Goodman, for Lake, said there were issues with the neighbour and she thought her actions would result in the neighbour moving away.
“She had no concept or understanding of the gravity of what she was doing when she embarked upon the course she did.”
He said that time spent remanded in custody and away from her family and her sick husband made her realise what she had done.
“She has reflected on what she has done. She wants to be at home with her children and partner.”
Mr Goodman said Lake would be keen to be moved by the city council to another house, so as to avoid any future problems.
Sentencing her, Judge Peter Jacobs jailed Lake for 20 months and also made an 18 month restraining order for her not to make contact with the neighbour.
Judge Jacobs said the city council should be asked if there was any chance of getting a house move for Lake.
He said that Lake carried out a campaign of threats, and said the powder she sent was aimed at terrifying the victims into thinking it was something deadly.
He said reports showed she was not suffering from any form of treatable mental illness.
He added that he hoped on her release she could make a fresh start with the help of the city council.
“If the council can possibly do anything in the circumstances of this case to rehouse you in a similar property somewhere else it would be good, Let’s hope that something can be done when you come out.”