A MAN who claimed he could not get a doctor's appointment over the New Year holidays repeatedly rang police stating he was going to kill people.

Bolton Magistrates' Court heard how former Territorial Army soldier Alun Morris suffers with physical and mental health problems but became frustrated when he was unable to get help on December30.

Shazia Aslam, prosecuting, told how 48-year-old Morris called police making threats to harm himself and other people.

He told the operator: "I spent Christmas killing people and I want to kill a lot of people now. I think I will get some knives out and do it that way."

Miss Aslam said that when police arrived at Morris' Bury Road home he was calm and compliant and agreed to speak to a mental health team.

But the next day he rang police again and claimed to have put people in body bags.

Morris was taken to hospital by police but was not deemed to be at risk and so was not detained.

On New Year's Day he rang police again and told them: "I want to go and kill people. It's the way it's got to be."

Over the next two days Morris made further calls to police threatening to kill people and was taken to hospital on a total of three occasions, but not admitted.

Morris was arrested. "At the police station he said that he was having a bad time and wanted help. He didn't think anyone would attend," said Miss Aslam.

Morris pleaded guilty to a charge of wasting police time by making false reports to a call handler.

Martin Pizzey, defending, stressed Morris' mental health problems possibly stem from his time working as a nurse on an end-of-life ward when he was younger, having to care for people who were dying.

"He has extensive mental health difficulties," said Mr Pizzey, who said that just before the Christmas holidays his medication was altered, causing him to become unstable.

"He felt very isolated and very much at risk to himself," he said. "He explained that he couldn't get a doctor's appointment between Christmas and New Year.

"He accepts he called police and his motivation was to get attention."

Magistrates sentenced Morris, who has worked as a tree surgeon, to a conditional discharge for three years and ordered him to pay £106 in costs and charges.

Magistrates' chairman, Anthony Coffey told him: "We know that you are crying for help and now you are going to get it and go into a more stable form of life."