Good evening – it was a varied day in courtrooms across our area.
Diver drifted at sea for 11 hours
A fishing firm has been fined after one of its divers went missing for more than 11 hours and had to be rescued by a passing Russian ship as he drifted towards the Baltic.
Orkney Dived Scallops Ltd, admitted health and safety breaches over the terrifying incident at The Kist, South Ronaldsay.
The firm had been carrying out a scallop diving operation in the area when the incident happened.
A rope had become tangled in the vessel’s propeller, causing it to drift off while a diver remained in the water.
Assault in maternity hospital
A dad drunkenly assaulted his partner inside Aberdeen Maternity Hospital then punched another parent who ran to her aid.
Andrew Stenson lashed out at his partner inside their room at the hospital, where their child is being treated.
Brazen thefts and brazen threats
A man has been fined almost £400 for threatening to kill a neighbour and for carrying out two brazen city centre thefts.
Robert Murison pinched a wallet from a man in Caffe Nero on Union Street then tried to use a credit card from it in WH Smith minutes later.
A few weeks later the 38-year-old casually leaned over the counter of RS McColl on Union Street and helped himself to scratch cards from beside the till.
A woman who crashed her pal’s car while more than three times the drink-drive limit has been banned from the road.
Pamela Knowles had been staying with her friend in the Bucksburn area in May and had been given the keys to the Citroen to retrieve something from the car.
The pair then drank alcohol together before Knowles went to visit a neighbour around 10pm.
‘That’s why he snapped’
A man who ‘snapped’ and assaulted a woman after discovering his home had been raided has been handed a community payback order.
Gavin Hampton, 22, of Assynt Road, Inverness appeared for sentencing via videolink at Inverness Sheriff Court today having previously pled guilty to the charge.
The court heard that on July 22 of this year Hampton arrived at his home with a number of associates only to discover it had been broken into and all of his valuables taken.
Later that evening Hampton’s female victim made reference to his own previous convictions, at which point he pushed her on the neck causing her to fall back onto the bed she was standing by.
Solicitor Rory Gowans, for Hampton, told the court that his client “bitterly regrets what he did”.
He added: “He was on somewhat of a self destruct mission that day, everything of any worth had been stolen and then he was called a name. That’s why he snapped.”
Sheriff Sara Matheson handed Hampton a community payback order with 12 months supervision.
‘Drugs are not the answer’
A sheriff has told a man caught driving after taking cocaine that “drugs are not the answer.”
Kenneth Douglas, 43, of Wallace Place, Culloden, was stopped by an unmarked patrol on West Heather Road in Inverness on June 23 2020, Fiscal Depute Ruaridh Allison told Inverness Sheriff Court.
“The officers observed that his pupils were constricted and he seemed nervous, they suspected that he was under the influence of a controlled substance.”
Father-of-two Douglas was taken into custody where subsequent tests revealed his level of the cocaine metabolite Benzoylecgonine to be 467 micrograms per litre of blood, more than nine times the legal driving limit of 50 micrograms.
At the sentencing hearing today Douglas’ solicitor Mark Dickson explained that his client had recently separated after 14 years of marriage and was grieving the death of his father.
“He is, sadly, someone who has suffered something of a breakdown,” Mr Dickson said, adding: “He does appear to be someone who was genuinely crying out for help.”
Sentencing Douglas to 100 hours of unpaid work, and banning him from driving for 12 months, Sheriff Sara Matheson said: “Drugs are not the answer to these difficulties, in your case it may be a bit of the cause. Treat this as a wake-up call.”
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