A NSW man threatened to bash to death the manager of a supermarket after he was refused entry due to COVID-19 limits on the number of customers allowed into the store.
A NSW man threatened to bash to death the manager of a supermarket after he was refused entry due to COVID-19 limits on the number of customers allowed into the store.

Death threats come after man refused entry to supermarket

AFTER he was told he couldn't enter a supermarket due to coronavirus restrictions on customer numbers, a northern NSW man emailed death threats to staff and the store's manager, before he called and told the manager he was going to "punch your head in until you're dead", a court has heard.

Paul Christopher McLean, 53, faced Grafton Local Court last week for sentencing after pleading guilty to a series of charges, including use carriage service to threaten to kill, use carriage service to menace/harass/offend, intentionally or recklessly destroy/damage property and possessing marijuana plants.

According to court documents, on March 28, 2020, McLean attended the IGA Iluka supermarket, but due to the COVID-19 virus the supermarket was only letting a small number of people inside the store.

McLean verbally abused an elderly couple waiting in line at the front of the store, telling them "why don't you f--- off back to Queensland. We should blow the Esk river bridge up so people don't come over. I can brick the front of the store up, that will stop them".

The Woombah man then attempted to enter store but was stopped by the first victim, a staff member at the front door letting people in when other shoppers left, who told McLean that he had to wait.

McLean told the victim "who the f--- are you to tell me what I can do", before saying "go f--- yourself" then leaving.

The store manager was informed and typed up a ban notice for McLean, and police were contacted to serve the notice which was given to McLean about 9pm that night. The court documents state that McLean was hostile and told police he could do what he wants and would win in court if he was charged with anything.

At some point during the night McLean has attended the Iluka Golf Club on Iluka Rd and spray painted two signs with "IGA" and a hangman picture and "F--- IGA" as well as the victim's names.

The court documents state McLean then travelled further towards Iluka and spray painted the victim's name followed by RIP on a Clarence Property Agents sign, and the manager's name followed by RIP on a shed opposite the supermarket.

At 2.27am on April 3, McLean sent an email to the business address of the IGA supermarket that read "after you letter you made up in 5 min I've decided to bash you to death you should have more brains so c--- you sign your name so look out". At 2.33am, McLean sent another email that said "you f---ing grub I won't visit when you caring see".

About 8am the same day McLean phoned IGA Iluka and the manager answered. McLean said "did you ban Paul McLean last night?"

Manager asked if that was McLean on the phone, who said he was coming into town to "punch your head in until you're dead. The police can't help you. You'll want to get every police man you can because I'm coming to get you you c---. Call police now and tell them you're lying. Look out c---."

Police were notified of the call who then attended McLean's Woombah property where he was arrested. Police discovered a number of marijuana plants and claimed he had government permission for them.

While arrested at Yamba Police Station the agreed facts state McLean ranted for two hours about the victims and made further threats while in custody, telling police "you know where I'm going as soon as I get out?" then said he was going to one of the victim's homes and said "I should have grabbed her ponytail and knocked the c--- out" "tell that c--- in town she better leave town" and "those c---- won't ever sleep safe again."

In court on Tuesday last week McLean was sentenced to a nine-month intensive corrections order, which included an order to perform 100 hours community service. McLean was ordered not to come within 500m of the Iluka IGA supermarket.