Benedict Cumberbatch and family threatened at home by knife-wielding man

A man wielding a knife damaged the London home of Benedict Cumberbatch and made various threats while the actor, his wife and their children were inside, a U.K. court heard this month.

Cumberbatch, 46, his wife Sophie Hunter, 45, and their three children were inside the north London property when Jack Bissell, a former hotel chef, approached an iron gate in the front garden, the BBC reported.

Bissell, 35, attempted to kick through the gate.

“I know you’ve moved here, I hope it burns down,” he allegedly shouted.

A prosecution lawyer claimed Bissell uprooted a plant and threw it at the garden wall. He also spat at an intercom by the entrance and used a fish knife to pry the device off the wall of the multi-million-dollar residence.

Bissell eventually fled the scene. He was later found and arrested by police after they retrieved his DNA from the intercom.

Bissell pleaded guilty to criminal damage while in court on May 10.

He was made to pay a £250 (nearly $420) fine and was handed a three-year restraining order that prevents him from contacting Cumberbatch’s family or entering the area where they live.

Originally, details from the incident were kept private and remained unreported until the British tabloid the Daily Mail successfully challenged blanket restrictions this week.

In court this month, the judge was told Bissell spoke to a nearby store owner before venturing to Cumberbatch’s home. While buying two bags of pita bread, Bissell allegedly told the shopkeeper he was going to break into a home and burn it down.

It is not clear if Bissell and Cumberbatch know one another. The Oscar-nominated actor has not commented publicly on the incident.

Cumberbatch is best known for his starring roles in films like Doctor Strange, The Imitation Game and The Power of the Dog and the popular British TV show Sherlock. He married Hunter, a theatre director and playwright, in 2015. The pair have three children, Christopher, 7, Hal, 6, and Finn, 4.

© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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