The trial against a man accused of standing on a seven-month-old baby has collapsed after an essential Crown witness claimed she made up the allegations out of spite.
Ricky Davidson had been accused of assaulting the child by repeatedly striking him on the head and body and standing on him at an address in the city on August 26 last year.
He was also alleged to have assaulted the baby’s mother to the danger of her life by strangling her with his arm.
However, fiscal depute Elaine Ward told the jury at Aberdeen Sheriff Court yesterday that she would not be leading further evidence and was no longer seeking a conviction on these charges.
The decision was taken after the baby’s mother, who can not be named for legal reasons, gave evidence during the first day of the trial and told the jury she had made it all up to “make him pay” following a row.
However, after the charges were dropped and the jury discharged the court heard Davidson had previously admitted stealing £5,600 from a betting shop in the city as well as threatening a potential witness who was due to give evidence in his case.
The court heard the 23-year-old had been a customer at Coral Eurobet in Aberdeen’s George Street on August 17 when the assistant manager took the takings out of the safe and laid them on the counter.
Mrs Ward said the woman had been planning to count the cash before returning it to the safe.
The court heard Davidson then approached the counter and asked the woman for a coffee. As she turned her back he grabbed the bag full of money and ran.
Mrs Ward said the police were called and CCTV was viewed. They eventually managed to trace Davidson but none of the money has been recovered.
Davidson also admitted attempting to pervert the course of justice by making threats to a woman who was due to give evidence in the trial.
The court heard that a woman who had been living next door to the baby and his mother claimed to have overheard a disturbance.
Mrs Ward said that after Davidson discovered she had made a statement to the police he turned up at her house and shouted at her “if you stand up in court against me you will see what happens”.
The court heard as a result of the threats the woman told the police she was “terrified” to give evidence and feared for her two young children.
Representing the repeat offender, solicitor Graeme Morrison said his client had previously benefited from a supervised release order and asked the sheriff to consider imposing one.
He said he recognised there was no other sentence which was likely to be imposed other than a period in prison.
Sheriff William Summers deferred sentence on Davidson for background reports. He was remanded in custody.