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Woman jailed for making bomb hoax call in Wickford

Woman jailed for making bomb hoax call in Wickford
A woman who made a hoax call claiming to have placed a bomb at Wickford train station has been jailed.

Michelle Sparrow, 43, unemployed, of Wethersfield Way, Wickford, was given a 32 month sentence at Basildon Crown Court yesterday, Monday, January 7, after admitting a charge of making a bomb hoax on Tuesday, August 28.

At around 4.45pm on Sunday, August 26, our control room received a call from a number, later identified as Sparrow’s phone.

Sparrow claimed she had put a bomb in the toilets of Wickford train station and this was due to detonate at 9pm that day. She also described the bomb and told the control handler that she wanted to hurt people.

We searched the train station and found no device before locating Sparrow and arresting her. She handed the arresting officers the phone that she had used to make the hoax.

Sparrow had recently been released from prison after completing a two year sentence for making a bomb hoax call in April 2016, when she claimed she had put a bomb at Colchester North Street station.

Chief Inspector Matthew Crow, of Essex Police’s control room, said: “Sparrow called 999 to report that a bomb had been left at a well-used train station and went on to describe the location and its appearance.

“Potentially many passengers and staff could have been in danger and we responded accordingly.

“We quickly established that this was in fact a hoax and our operations quickly switched to finding the caller. Sparrow was identified, located and arrested.

“Sparrow, who has shown remorse and guilty for actions, has been jailed for a very serious offence. We still are yet to fully understand what Sparrow’s motive was.

“Wasting police time and reporting false information, no matter how serious the information being reported, puts lives in danger.”

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