When most kids find out a secret about their father, it’s that he’s Santa Claus. It’s Christmas Eve, and they can’t sleep. They’re too excited about the awesome presents they’ll get to open the next day. Suddenly, they hear a thump. It’s him! They sneak out of their bedroom, tiptoe down the stairs and peek into the living room. But is that Jolly Saint Nick putting presents under the tree? No. It’s their dad. Reality hurts.
A little boy in Merseyside, England also unwittingly discovered a secret about his father, but unfortunately it was rather more serious than your typical childhood revelation.
It all started when a boy called the police and complained, “Daddy’s not his usual self.” If somebody says you’re “not your usual self,” that normally means you didn’t get enough sleep, or you’re sick. Not in this case. The boy said his dad, Barry Dermott, “had been sniffing white powder and drinking alcohol.”
When officers arrived at the house, the child said his dad “concealed a knife near to the entrance.” They searched the premises, and found a treasure trove of goodies straight out of an episode of Narcos: cocaine, other drugs, mixing agents and weighing scales. What’s more, they found a gun in the cupboard under the staircase; specifically, a .38 rimfire revolver wrapped in a plastic bag, kept in a black rucksack with ammunition.
Just when the scene couldn’t get any crazier, the boy’s grandfather burst in the door like Kramer. “Where’s the f***ing gun?” he yelled. Apparently, Grandpa was concerned about the boy’s safety.
Barry Dermott, 46, was charged with possession of a firearm, ammunition, and allowing premises to be used to produce Class A drugs. He pled guilty and was sentenced to six years and two months in prison. The forensics team analyzed the gun, and discovered it belonged to a man named Thomas Rowan, 24. He was sentenced to seven years in prison for his role in the mess.
In a police interview, Dermott explained that he got into debt, and would “have a line of coke and drink after work.” Every weekend, he’d spend £300 on his addictions. Soon enough, his house turned into a fully blown cocaine factory and a place to store guns. It has been reported that he didn’t get along with his kid’s mom, she made him sleep on the sofa.
It’s sad when people throw their lives away on drugs. Especially when there are children involved, and a family is torn apart. Let’s hope that Barry Dermott’s son has a better home life, and that there are happier days – and holidays – in his future.