Attacking a brick wall and bashing a bin were part of a “bizarre” rampage by a Canberra landscaper.
Court documents show Zachary John Froome, who pleaded guilty to a charge of damaging property, was taken to the Canberra Hospital on the evening of 3 November 2020 after he was found to be suffering from a suspected drug overdose.
The Conder man was discharged that night but a short time later began verbally abusing security staff in the hospital’s foyer.
Froome was later spotted in the car park outside the emergency department (ED) holding what police said was a “square-shaped metal hammer”.
He struck the ED window with the hammer, but didn’t break it, then walked away to the car park and used his tool to hit a metal bin multiple times.
Afterwards, Froome walked to a brick wall that lined a garden bed and began smashing it with his hammer, shattering bricks.
As he walked back towards hospital staff he continued to abuse them verbally. One alleged he said: “I’m going to rip your f—ing head off and shove it up your arse.”
Security apprehended him when he dropped the hammer. Police arrived at about 10:00 pm before helping paramedics sedate him with ketamine. He was admitted for a medical assessment, discharged and arrested.
“Compensation is sought for damage to the wall,” police said.
Froome pleaded guilty to a charge of damaging property over this incident, but pleaded not guilty to a charge of threatening to kill another person.
The latter charge relates to an incident in April 2021, after Froome allegedly got into an argument with a woman over a car.
Police allege he verbally abused the woman and told her: “I am gonna come and shoot you through the window.”
They further allege he told her: “If I am going to jail, I am going out in a big way. You will be taking your last breath today.”
On Tuesday (29 June), Froome was successful when he applied for bail for the third time in the ACT Magistrates Court.
His Legal Aid lawyer Ms Wallis said he had been in custody for two months, which allowed him time to become sober.
“He’s remained off drugs,” she said.
She said he ran a landscaping business and usually had two employees who had been impacted by his incarceration.
Magistrate James Stewart said the parts of Froome’s offending in the hospital were “bizarre”.
However, he said the allegation he had threatened to kill the woman was of particular concern.
“Mr Froome, for his tender age of 23 years, has a significant criminal history,” he said.
“He’s been in custody for quite some time, now two months.”
Magistrate Stewart ultimately granted bail, saying risks to the woman would be “outweighed” by strict bail conditions.
He ordered him not to contact the woman, not go into the north Canberra suburb where she lived and not take alcohol or illicit drugs. He adjourned the case to 6 July.