A DRUG addict who terrified a neighbour with an air-pistol has been jailed for four years.
Matthew Norwood, 22, fired the handgun four times at a neighbour who had complained about noise coming from a flat in Mayfield Road, Bury St Edmunds.
Ipswich Crown Court heard yesterday (Thursday) that the weapon was a gas-operated airgun but had the appearance of a 9mm semi automatic pistol.
As Carlos De Silva answered his door on May 2 he was confronted by Norwood and another man, said Robert Sadd prosecuting.
Norwood fired the gun four times towards Mr De Silva, causing him great shock and alarm, said Mr Sadd. No actual pellets were fired but the gun made a noise as if they were.
Armed police sealed off Mayfield Road and, two hours later, Norwood was arrested near Waitrose in Robert Boby Way.
When he was searched Norwood, now of Tutelina Road, Great Whelnethan, was carrying a lock knife which he claimed he had bought for self protection.
Mr Sadd said an expert examined the airgun and found that if it had been loaded with pellets they would have lrft the barrel at 213mph.
Though it was not a weapon requiring a firearms certificate, Norwood was banned from being in possession of it because he had served a sentence in a young offenders institution for attempted robbery.
Andrew Shaw, defending, said Norwood had a long standing drug problem and was taking a heroin substitute and Valium when the incident took place.
Mr Shaw said: “This was a clear case where he intended to frighten. He plainly did frighten.”
Norwood had pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm with intent to cause fear or alarm, possession of a firearm when prohibited and possession of a bladed article in a public place.
Jailing him for a total of four years, Judge David Goodin said that Mr De Silva had faced a terrifying situation.
He added: “I have no doubt that Mr De Silva thought that his last moment had come, that he was going to die.”