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Disabled man left ‘shaking with fear’ after drug addict’s terrifying assault

Denise Reid was taken into custody from Aberdeen Sheriff Court.

An addict who threatened to hurt a disabled man with a paint scraper unless he unlocked his safe has been jailed for more than a year.

Denise Reid talked her way into a vulnerable man’s Aberdeen flat before grabbing his safe, a bin bag and a bent paint scraper and told him she would kill him.

At one point the terrified man, who suffers from cerebral palsy, learning difficulties and is partially deaf, called his dad and told him: “Dad, dad, lady in house … lady kill me”.

Reid, 47, meanwhile could be heard swearing in the backround “are you kidding me?” and “are you serious?”

She was so intoxicated she didn’t remember the incident afterwards.

Fiscal depute Lucy Simpson told Aberdeen Sheriff Court how Reid targeted her then neighbour by demanding he let her into his ground floor flat at Castleton Park on November 5, last year.

‘His hands were shaking’

“There was a loud knock on the door around 6pm and he looked through the peephole and saw the accused,” she said.

“She asked to enter and he said no but she said she didn’t have keys and couldn’t get in. He pressed the button to let her in  and she came into his flat.”

From there she forcefully attacked him, pushing him around the room and onto the arm of his sofa.

“He was scared,” Miss Simpson added. “His hands were shaking. She started swearing at him and when he went to get his phone from the living room table she told him not to.”

Reid then left the room and returned carrying a black rubbish bag, a paint scraper and a safe.

“She asked him to open the safe and when he told her he didn’t know the code she tried to break it open with the scraper without success,” the fiscal said.

“He asked her to leave it alone and she then brandished the scraper and told him she was going to kill him.”

After 30 minutes of terrifying abuse the victim called his dad who heard him shout: “Dad dad, lady in house” and “lady kill me”.

When he got to his son he found him “pale and shaking with fear”.

‘Horrified to hear what she did’

Defence agent Iain Hingston told the court his client – who admitted assaulting the man – was in a state of “simple disbelief” as she heard her crimes read back to her.

He said she was battling a drug and drink addiction and is disgusted with herself for stooping so low.

“She suffered very badly with the lockdown,” he said. “She suffered with very poor mental health and regrettably that led to her overusing controlled substances.

“She was horrified to hear what she did, particularly in relation to the clear difficulties that her victims presents with.

“She has no recollection of how she knew the safe was there … she thinks someone must have told her.

“She’s ashamed of her behaviour and feels genuine contrition that she allowed herself to get into this state.”

It must have been ‘terrifying’

Sheriff Morag McLaughlin told Reid she had carried out a “nasty assault” on a “very vulnerable” person.

“I can only imagine how terrifying that must have been for him in a place where he should have felt safe,” she said.

“You have, to our credit, acknowledged that.

“You have also admitted this offence and avoided the need for a trial and for him to come to court to give evidence.”

She handed Reid, who gave an address in Aberdeen, a 58-week prison sentence. That was reduced from 18 months in light of her guilty plea.

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