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Wednesday courts round-up – Shop robber foiled by sweets and the man who spat at cop during pandemic

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Good evening – it was a varied day in courtrooms across our areas.

Drug driver stopped by member of public

A member of the public came to the rescue when a drug driver with two burst tyres forced a string of cars onto the verge while swerving in and out of oncoming traffic.

Dee Buchanan had been taking prescribed Diazepam following a head injury when she got behind the wheel of her blue Volkswagen Polo on the B9170 Oldmeldrum to Inverurie road.

However, the drugs affected the 57-year-old to the extent she was swerving in and out of oncoming traffic forcing other cars onto the grass verge, striking kerbs, driving over a roundabout, and bursting two tyres so she was driving on just the metal rims.

Dee Buchanan leaving court.

Buchanan of New Park Steading, Kingswells, had continued to drive until a member of the public managed managed to bring her to a stop.

She admitted dangerous driving and driving while unfit through drugs.

Sheriff William Summers handed Buchanan a four-year driving ban and imposed 12 months’ supervision and 240 hours of unpaid work as a direct alternative to a custodial sentence.

Man spat at police during ‘height of pandemic’

A man who spat at a police constable who tried to help him was told his actions, which happened at the height of the pandemic, were “disgusting”.

Leslie Robertson had also kicked the officer in the stomach during the incident on December 30, last year.

Inverness Sheriff Court was told it happened in Masonic Close, Elgin when the two officers saw a man lying in the stairwell.

Inverness Sheriff Court.

Fiscal depute Robert Weir told Sheriff Margaret Neilson the officers tried to help  Robertson, 41,  to his feet when he lashed out with his legs, making contact with one.

As they attempted to restrain Robertson he spat at the officer.

Noting Robertson’s previous convictions which were admitted, Sheriff Neilson commented: “It is disgusting particularly as it was during the Covid pandemic.”

She deferred sentence on Robertson, of Morriston Road, Elgin, until next month for a background report.

Knife-wielding robber was pelted with tins of sweets

A knife-wielding robber was foiled in his bid to make off with cash from an Aberdeen shop when staff pelted him with tins of sweets.

Jay Jay Kirton was in possession of a large kitchen knife at the Nisa store on Hayton Road and demanded staff give him “all the money”, but ended up only making off with some cigarette papers – and a bottle of Irn Bru.

Jay Jay Kirton was jailed for three years over the offences.

The court heard as Kirton, 29, made his escape, an employee who chased him outside the store was then threatened with the glass bottle of Irn Bru before a violent struggle took place.

Kirton was jailed for three years at Aberdeen Sheriff Court over the offences which took place on May 20 this year.

Sheriff Morag McLaughlin sentenced Kirton, whose address was given as HMP Grampian, to three years in prison.

Child rapist jailed for eight years

A child rapist who preyed on a girl from the age of 12 has been jailed for eight years.

Judge Lady Scott informed Gerard Haggerty, 61, that he will be placed on the sex offenders’ register indefinitely following his sentencing at the High Court in Edinburgh.

Haggerty, a prisoner in Inverness, was earlier convicted of abusing the underage girl over a two year period in Elgin, in Morayshire.

He was found guilty of sexually assaulting and raping her on various occasions between July and December in 2018 and two further offences of engaging in sexual activity with a child which occurred between December 2018 and 2020.

Haggerty was caught after a woman  had “suspicions” about him and the girl and a camera was set up.

Footage was caught of him exposing himself in front of the girl and police were alerted.

Men in court facing danger of life charge

Two men have appeared in court charged with a serious assault “to the danger of life” involving a blade and hammer.

Police were contacted over two incidents within the space of five minutes at Sheddocksley playing fields on Monday evening, first in relation to a report of a dog being attacked by another dog, and then to an alleged serious assault on a man.

A 35-year-old man was taken to hospital following the alleged assault.

And now two men have appeared in private at Aberdeen Sheriff Court in connection with the incident, with one of them also facing a charge under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991.

Craig Dick, 34, and Craig Strachan 26, both faced a charge of assault to severe injury, permanent disfigurement and danger of life.

The men appeared in private at Aberdeen SHeriff Court. Picture by Chris Sumner.

It is understood the allegation involves the use of a blade and a hammer.

Dick also faced a charge relating to a dog being “dangerously out of control”, as well as a charge of assault to injury and robbery and behaving in a threatening or abusive manner.

Meanwhile, Strachan also faced two charges of behaving in a threatening or abusive manner.

The men, both of Aberdeen, did not enter a plea during the hearing.

The case against them was committed for further examination and Strachan was granted bail while Dick was remanded in custody.

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