[Source: Northampton Chronicle & Echo Published: Tuesday, 6 June, 1972]
Nineteen year old Patrick Austin was in the habit of taking drugs until he became involved in “The Jesus Movement of Bugbrooke,” Northampton Borough Magistrates Court heard yesterday.
And now, instead of injecting himself with Methadone, Austin discusses drug problems with other young people who attend meetings and seek the help of the Jesus Movement at Bugbrooke Baptist Church.
Austin, a labourer, of 20 Watkin Terrace, Northampton, pleaded guilty of possessing a quantity of Methadone and he admitted two charges of supplying the drug to Miss Denise Boyce.
He was fined £40 on the first charge and £50 on each charge of supplying Methadone – namely one ampoule of Physeptone – and he was also ordered to pay £l5 to-wards his legal aid.
The Chairman of the Bench, Mr. C. E. Lewis, told Austin: “These offences — particularly those of supplying drugs — would un-doubtedly have meant a term of imprisonment or Borstal.
“But because of the circumstances of which we have heard we feel able to take a more lenient course,”
Mr. J. H. Reddihough prosecuting, told the court that oajvfarch 30 PC’S Philip Vickers and Trevor.
James of the Northamptonshire Drug Squad were on duty in Northampton town centre when they saw Austin with Miss Boyce.
“The defendant, on seeing the officers, ran off towards Wood Hill and PC Vickers followed him into the men’s toilet where he con-fronted Austin who was in one of the cubicles.”
Mr. Reddihough went on “Austin had his sleeve rolled up and in the cubicle the officer found part of a syringe and the glass end of an ampoule of Physeptone.
“He also found a belt stained with blood which Austin had obviously used to wrap around his arm when be injected himself.”
Mr. Reddihough said there were injection marks on both of Austin’s arms and PC Vickers asked him: “How long have you been shooting?” Austin replied: “A couple of days.”
He said he had been experimenting and he eventually admitted that he had obtained the drugs from a registered addict known as “John” Each ampoule had cost him 75p.
He made a statement saying “I have been using hard drugs for a couple of days. I am not a junkie — I only use them because I have been feeling depressed.”
He later made another statement saying he had “scored off John” for about one and a half months.”
“I must have scored about 10 amps off him. He is known among the kids as an easy touch.” He admitted supplying drugs to Denise Boyce on two occasions — March 28 and 29.
Mr. Reddihough said Austin had two previous convictions — for possessing cannabis and obtaining a pecuniary advantage. He was in breach of a probation order for the latter offence.
Mr. Murray Holmes, defending, said that at the time of the offences Miss Boyce was Austin’s girlfriend and she was in the habit of taking drugs.
“They had an agreement that if Austin had any drugs to spare he would supply her and vice-versa.”
Speaking of Austin’s involvement with the Jesus Movement, Mr. Holmes said: “The Movement have done something with this young man when only a month or so ago he was heading in one direction only — and that was to Borstal.”
Mr. Holmes went on: “He tells me he hasn’t taken any drugs since he became a member and he has virtually broken all contact with his friends involved in the Northampton drugs scene, including Miss Boyce.
“He now has another girl friend who is also a member of the Jesus Movement. Through the Movement he is able to talk to other people who have problems with drugs and he tells them how he has drawn himself away from them.”