UK News: County Durham woman threatened to burn down carer's home within hours of prison release

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A woman threatened to burn down a carer's home within hours of being released from prison and falsely accused her of being a "paedophile".

Durham Crown Court © Newcastle Chronicle Durham Crown Court

Laura Walker went to a full-time carer's home and made terrifying threats while making hurtful accusations before police arrived to arrest her. The 34-year-old left the woman feeling terrified that her home would be burned down.

On Wednesday, Walker, of Durham Road, Chester-le-Street, appeared at Durham Crown Court to be sentenced for threatening to destroy or damage property.

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Joe Hedworth, prosecuting, said: "On January 18 this year the defendant knocked on the victim's door within hours of being released from prison. She accused the complainant of hurting children and called her a paedophile and said that she would set her house on fire. The complainant said she had not done anything. The defendant said there were 30 people on their way to burn her house down."

Walker, who had 42 previous convictions for 84 offences, was arrested after the police were called and said she was "not making a direct threat" when interviewed the next day. In a victim statement, the complainant said she felt "unsafe and scared" following the incident.

Ellen Wright, defending, said Walker was "vulnerable" and "keen to take part in mental health treatment". She said: "Perhaps it is one way she can break the cycle she's found herself in. There was no malice, she genuinely believed children had been harmed, that was down to poor mental health. She understands that would have caused immense distress and is embarrassed and ashamed."

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Sentencing Walker, Judge James Adkin, the Recorder of Durham, gave her a 12 month community order and ordered her to undertake a mental health treatment requirement. A 10 year restraining order was also imposed.

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How and why the Berlin Wall was built .
Built on the orders of East German communist politician Erich Honecker to stem the mass emigration of Germans from East Berlin to West Berlin, the Berlin Wall was a heavily guarded barrier that physically and ideologically divided the city from 1961 to 1989. In a wider context, the wall came to symbolize the "Iron Curtain" that separated Western Europe and the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War. It was constructed in just two weeks, initially as a makeshift barbed wire and concrete block wall. But it was soon strengthened and reinforced to serve as a deadly obstacle to anyone seeking freedom in the West. In this gallery, click through and be reminded of how quickly the Berlin Wall went up, and the way it cut an entire city in two.

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