A car thief nearly died after ram-raiding a grocery shop and then crashing into a piece of heavy machinery as he fled.
Liam Anderson stole a grey Honda CRV from Queens Road in Aberdeen and used it to raid the Costcutter store on Main Street, Newburgh.
But as he made his getaway – with three friends in the car – he smashed into the back of a stationary road paving vehicle on the old A90 near Balmedie.
>> Keep up to date with the latest news with The P&J newsletter
At the city’s sheriff court yesterday, Anderson admitted the theft as well as a string of other charges including seriously injuring his friends by driving dangerously.
The crash happened at 3.40am on July 1, just a couple of hours after he stole the Honda.
Sheriff William Buchanan remanded Anderson in custody pending sentence, despite an impassioned plea from the 21-year-old’s lawyer asking that he be allowed to spend Christmas with his family.
Defence agent Liam McAllister said his client had “almost died” in the crash and that it had motivated him to attend rehab and turn his life around.
Anderson admitted stealing the car, breaking into the village shop and stealing alcohol, and driving dangerously “by reaching excessive speeds and causing the vehicle to collide with a stationary road paving vehicle, causing extensive damage to both” – while disqualified.
Court papers state that Christopher McDonough, Christopher Milne and Lisa Mitchell were also in the car and suffered “serious injuries”.
Mr McAllister said the horror smash had led to his client reaching “a crossroads” in his life.
“He almost died and he almost caused considerable further consequences to others,” he said.
“He has been permanently disfigured, his face has been badly affected by a fairly horrific injury.
“But in some perverse way, it took this serious matter for him to realise where he was in his life.
“With the support of his family, he was admitted to the Alexander Clinic rehab centre at Oldmeldrum and completed a difficult two-week course in relation to substance misuse.
“His grandfather has supported him on the understanding that he takes responsibility for his behaviour and never places himself or anyone else in this position ever again.
“He is a bright young man with huge potential.”
Anderson, of Bedford Avenue in Aberdeen, shouted and swore as the appeal to allow him to remain at liberty was rejected.
The accused will return to the dock on January 14 to be sentenced.