Knife man admits Buckingham Palace trespass

A British police officer guards the grounds of Buckingham Palace in central London, Monday, Oct. 14, 2013 Belmar was brought down by police after jumping a vehicle barrier

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A man armed with a six-inch knife was rugby tackled to the ground by police outside Buckingham Palace after jumping a vehicle barrier in an attempt to see the Queen, a court has heard.

David Belmar, 44, from Haringey, north London, admitted trespass and possession of a bladed article at Westminster Magistrates' Court.

The Queen was not in the palace at the time of the incident.

Belmar has been remanded in custody until sentencing at a date not yet set.

Chief Magistrate Howard Riddle adjourned sentencing so that pre-sentence reports could be carried out.

The court heard that Belmar was watched by a crowd of tourists as he tried to run through the palace's north centre gate at about 11:30 BST on Monday.

'Danger to Queen'

After police brought Belmar to the ground and searched him, they found a kitchen knife wrapped in a plastic bag in his jacket pocket.

Edward Aydin, prosecuting, told the court: "In police custody, he said to police 'I wanted to see the Queen. I'm not happy about my benefits'."

Royal security scares

  • 1974 - a mentally ill man, Ian Ball, tries to kidnap Princess Anne as she is driven down the Mall. Her bodyguard and three other people are shot
  • 1981 - six blank shots are fired from the crowd while the Queen is riding in the Trooping the Colour ceremony
  • 1982 - unemployed Michael Fagan breaks into the Queen's private chambers in Buckingham Palace while she is in bed
  • 1994 - student David Kang charges at Prince Charles while firing a starting pistol during a ceremony in Sydney
  • 2003 - comedian Aaron Barschak manages to get into Prince William's 21st birthday party at Windsor Castle

He added that Belmar, who has mental health issues which he is taking medication for, has a fixation with the Queen and received a caution in 1989 for lighting fireworks and throwing them into the grounds of Buckingham Palace.

"Armed guards had to stop him," Mr Aydin said. "He could have been fired upon. Other people could have been hurt. And there was a risk of some form of disorder there outside the palace."

Mr Aydin said Belmar's behaviour was "unpredictable" and "he is a danger to the public, carrying a knife in central London, and he is a danger to the Queen".

Robert Katz, defending, denied Belmar had a fixation with the Queen or Buckingham Palace, as it was claimed.

He said his client had been on incapacity benefit for the past 10 years but that it was stopped after he was assessed in September.

Mr Katz said: "He became very upset by that decision and he didn't know how he was going to cope."

He added that Belmar did not brandish the knife and was not going to use it, but that he had "wanted to draw publicity to what had happened to him".

Chief Magistrate Riddle said the case was too serious to be dealt with in the magistrates' court, given Belmar's past convictions.

He said that if Belmar were granted bail "there is a real risk, until he is properly assessed and perhaps further medication prescribed".

The judge added that Belmar "is a danger not just to himself but to others".

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