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Ex-football international from Accrington threatened to shoot man
8:00pm Sunday 10th March 2013 in News
AN ex-football international made a threat to shoot another man just three days before he was due to be released from jail at the end of a sentence.
Adam Neal, who appeared in an England under 19s match against Sweden, told prison authorities he had been having visions and dreams of killing someone.
He said he had wanted to kill a man called Matthew Stevenson who had given evidence against him in an assault case.
Neal, of South Street, Accrington was given a two year community order by a judge at Preston Crown Court yesterday (Fri) who heard the 27-year-old had served the equivalent of a fourteen months sentence while on remand.
He had been kept in prison since the incident at Haverigg Prison on July 14 last year.
He had pleaded guilty to a charge of threatening to take revenge.
The background to the case was that Neal, who has also been a professional footballer with Burnley, was originally given 120 days custody in late 2011 for two offences of battery and one of criminal damage.
His appeal was dismissed last year.
Jacob Dyer, prosecuting, said a man called Matthew Stevenson was a victim in one of the assaults. Mr Stevenson's girlfriend was also assaulted, at the same time, in the struggle.
Mr Stevenson went on to give evidence against him in the magistrates court and then in the crown court appeal.
Neal's release had been due to take palce on July 17 last year. But three days before that, prison officers went to his cell in Haverigg because a bell was ringing.
Mr Dyer said: "The defendant indicated he had been having visions and dreams about killing someone. He told a prison officer he had the capability of shooting someone and said he had access to a gun.
"When asked who he was going to shoot, he said he was going to shoot Matthew Stevenson and continued to say he wanted to kill him.
Defence barrister Mr Ken Hind said Neal had had a terrible family background. He was adopted at the age of ten and didn't seem to have opened up to anybody until recently.
Judge Anthony Russell QC placed Neal on two years supervision and made a restraining order barring him from having any direct or indirect contact with Matthew Stevenson.