A MAN claimed there was a man with a handgun inside a Prestwick pub during a hoax call, a court heard.

Ayr man John Poole, falsely made police aware that a man was carrying a firearm in The Pioneer on August 13.

On the same day, he alerted Scottish Fire and Rescue of an apparent emergency at Saunterne Road, Prestwick.

Again, the call was found to be a hoax.

Procurator Fiscal, Mr Sheeran told the court: “At 6.50pm police received a callreporting that calls were made.

“John Poole requested they meet him to provide more information. They went on two separate occasions. He told them he heard of a man in possession of a handgun.

“When police arrived, they saw John Poole was heavily under the influence of alcohol.”

Representing Poole, solicitor Tony Currie said: “He is 42 years old and is in a long term relationship. He plead guilty immediately.

“The calls made were not as a deliberate hoax but of the perception that everything around him was obscured bya significant quantity of alcohol.”

Sheriff D Young QC noted that the accused had tried to use CCTV to back up one of his claims.

Mr Currie responded: “For this charge the area was somewhat away from the one Poole was describing. In any case Mr Poole misinterpreted the circumstances through drink. You will also read from report that this is a man who has had long standing issues with alcohol.”

Mr Currie also told the court that Poole is fit for unpaid work and is keen to engage with addi ction services where he will beprescribed antabuse: He said: “His position is that he asked to be put forward for this.”

Sheriff Young deferred sentence of Poole at Ayr Sheriff Court on Tuesday October 2.

This is pending the outcome of his self-referral to NHS Addiction Services.

Sheriff Young said: “It is serious offending. It’s not only wasting police time but also the fire service.

“I don’t propose to deal with this today but after he is prescribed antabuse. I will put this off until I know the further risk of offending.”

Poole will appear at court on October 23 for the charges.