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Thursday, 24 April 2014

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Man caused £10,000 damage to Carlisle cabaret bar Outrageous

A man with a history of mental illness has admitted causing thousands of pounds damage to one of Carlisle’s most eye-catching nightspots.

CCTV cameras caught Paul Dickinson attacking Outrageous, the gay-friendly cabaret bar in English Street at 5am on January 11 – the day after his 41st birthday.

He first climbed a stepladder – which he had taken to the scene himself – to reach up to the sign above the doors and spray it black.

The sign – a one-off specially commissioned piece of artwork which spelled put the club’s name with vibrantly coloured bowls, flowers and high-heeled shoes – was ruined.

Then he climbed back down to the pavement and covered the four main windows with garish tangerine gloss paint.

Staff at the club said it would cost up to £10,000 to repair.

It is understood Dickinson believed he had some grievance against the bar’s previous owners and had not realised it had changed hands.

Dickinson, of Corporation Road, Carlisle, was arrested almost immediately but it was not until yesterday that he appeared at the city’s Crown Court for the first time.

With his long grey hair tied in a ponytail, he was accompanied to court by the community psychiatric nurse who had been responsible for his care since he was discharged from being an inpatient in a psychiatric hospital.

Dickinson pleaded guilty to the charge of damaging windows and signage on property owned by flamboyant city businessman Dan Russell.

He was remanded on bail for background and psychiatric reports and will be sentenced on November 12.

Defence advocate Chris Toms told Judge Barbara Forrester that a detailed report on Dickinson’s mental health was essential because “there are significant issues with him”.

After the incident club bosses said they were “baffled” by it.

Dee Lockhart, PA to the club’s chief executive Glenn Anderson, said: “We caught the whole thing on CCTV. This guy turns up, without a care in the world, just taking his time, casually spraying over our sign.

“The video shows him coming along, having a good look at the building, then he goes round the corner where he’s obviously stashed a ladder, and then he comes back to start work, going from left to right, spraying our sign.

“Then he takes the ladder away, comes back and sprays all four of our windows completely orange.

“ And he’s ruined the Outrageous sign, so that instead of now being gorgeous, vibrant, bright colours it’s been sprayed black.”


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