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Suspended Dundee chef threatened to burn his boss’s house down and kill her partner

Suspended Dundee chef threatened to burn his boss’s house down and kill her partner

A suspended chef threatened to burn his boss’s house down and kill her partner.

Stewart Burne-Jones sent Claire McLaren a series of Facebook messages as well as a picture of her front door on Happyhillock Road.

He said in one of the messages: “I don’t want to set the world on fire but your house will do just fine.”

A sheriff warned the accused that he has put himself at risk of a prison sentence.

It was revealed at Dundee Sheriff Court that Burne-Jones was suspended from his work with a city restaurant and approached Miss McLaren, his manager, on a team night out.

She felt uncomfortable with this and told him to go away.

Just after midnight on Thursday, Miss McLaren received Facebook messages threatening both her and her partner Ryan McCulloch.

Depute fiscal Isobel Vincent said: “The accused said: ‘I am about to barge into your house right now. Ryan better be there.’

“‘I am coming to kill Ryan. Assassinate him. I am outside your house. **** you both. Die soon.’”

Miss McLaren looked outside her window and saw the silhouette figure of a man before leaning over a garden fence and identifying Burne-Jones. Police traced Burne-Jones who said: “I know why you are here. Me and my pal had a spat.”

The 33-year-old, of Helmsdale Crescent, pleaded guilty from custody to sending threatening messages to the pair.

Defence solicitor Stuart Hamilton said Burne-Jones had drunk a “considerable” amount of alcohol and was “genuinely shocked” to read the messages he had sent. Mr Hamilton said Burne-Jones is now signed off from work with stress.

Sheriff Alastair Carmichael called for social work reports to look at an alternative to custody. Sentence was deferred until May 3 and Burne-Jones was bailed.

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