An alcoholic who threatened to burn down a popular pub and then racially abused a shop worker has been jailed.
Jan Clough was told to leave the Roebuck Inn pub in Rishton after he was abusive towards a barmaid.
Burnley Crown Court heard how Clough, who was with a large rottweiler dog, then told the landlady ‘you come near me I’ll smash your ******* face in and I’ll burn this ******* pub down, I’ll do it while you’re asleep’.
He then went into the nearby Whiteheads shop on High Street and after being racially abusive towards a shop worker said ‘I’m going to burn the shop down, I’m ******* barred from here’.
Clough, 31, of Heywood Street, Great Harwood pleaded guilty to threatening to commit criminal damage and racially aggravated harassment and was jailed for 15 months.
Robert Elias, prosecuting, told the court how the incident started at the pub at around 5.40pm on August 20 last year.
The court heard how Clough was abusive towards a barmaid and was told to leave after he said ‘I swear I will burn this ******* pub down’.
Mr Elias said when a customer told him to give back his pint glass Clough walked away saying ‘I swear on my dad’s grave I will come back and smash all the windows in this pub and burn it down’.
The court heard how witnesses said Clough’s rottweiler was ‘terrified’ of him and was ‘shaking’.
Mr Elias said: “His demeanour and attitude were so unpleasant that his own dog was scared of him and that perhaps speaks for itself.”
A victim statement from the ladlady told how customers have been ‘put off because of his attendance’ and that he has ‘a bad name around Rishton’.
Mr Elias said around five minutes later Clough then went into the Whiteheads shop.
He told the court: “The defendant is a long-standing trouble maker in that shop turning up drunk or drugged and frothing at the mouth staggering about and issuing racial abuse.
“He seems to have been a trouble maker in that shop and generally in the area.”
The court heard how Clough told one of the shopworkers ‘what are you working for this **** **** for?’. Mr Elias said Clough then confronted the shop owner and said he was going to ‘burn’ the victim and ‘purported to set his dog on him, but he didn’t do that’.
Defence barrister Mark Stuart said they were ‘very unpleasant matters’.
He told the court that Clough, who has 41 previous convictions for 65 offences, has been addicted to alcohol and cannabis in the past and he was ‘effectively homeless’ at the time.
He told the court: “His father had died earlier in the year. That doesn’t excuse what he did but it led to an increase in his alcohol intake at the time.
“He didn’t exhibit any physical violence but what he said was very unpleasant.
“He is accepting at long last the need to address his alcohol problem.
“He has had now six and a half months drink free and while he has been in custody he has come to recognise he can’t continue to drink at the levels that he was, he is adamant he won’t start drinking again.”
Sentencing, Judge Beverley Lunt said: “Whatever problems you have you can’t go around behaving like this.
“These people take you seriously because you’re so unstable, so aggressive and so drunk that when you make these nasty threats they believe you and that’s terrifying.
“I’m quite satisfied there has to be an immediate custodial sentence.”