HAVERHILL — A man who allegedly threatened to stab his roommate was ordered held without bail in Haverhill District Court yesterday.

Clifton Dempsey, 50, of 91/2 Solitaire Drive, was arrested at 9:10 p.m. Saturday and charged with assault with a dangerous weapon and possession of a class B drug. Police were called by the alleged victim.

Dempsey swallowed pills in front of the officers, police said. At Dempsey's residence, officers said they found oxycodone and Percocet pills for which he did not have a prescription.

"It looks like he's out of control," Assistant District Attorney John DePaulo said at his arraignment.

Dempsey told police he did not have a knife and denied threatening anybody, DePaulo said. But a witness said she heard Dempsey threaten the alleged victim.

Police also said they found a knife in a sheath at Dempsey's home.

Attorney Timothy Connors said Dempsey has four children, including a 17-year-old whom he is supporting.

"Incarceration would have an adverse effect," Connors said. The attorney also said his client has a prescription for the pills the police found.

DePaulo said the prescription was in someone else's name.

"I am going to detain him," said Judge Patricia Dowling, noting Dempsey is still on probation for driving under the influence of liquor, disguising himself to obstruct justice, and operating after license suspension. He was arrested on those charges May 14, 2009.

Dempsey's case was continued until Oct. 7.

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