A young woman had to have an emergency caesarean after she was struck by flying glass from a mirror smashed by a teenager.
Inverness Sheriff Court heard the operation was carried out amid fears for her unborn baby’s life.
Steven Shepherd was charged with culpably and recklessly smashing a mirror and endangering the life of the woman and her child.
He admitted the offence and appeared in court for sentence yesterday.
The horrifying incident happened at a house at Muir of Ord on June 21 last year.
Shepherd, who was aged 15 at the time, was spared a custodial sentence after Sheriff Margaret Neilson took an hour considering how to deal with the “anxious case”.
She placed him on a community payback order, with 300 hours of unpaid work as an alternative to custody.
He was also placed under supervision for three years and told he must stay where Highland Council instructed him to live, and participate in various programmes as directed by social workers.
Sheriff Neilson told the 16-year-old: “This is a very serious charge which had very serious consequences. You are fortunate that the consequences were not even more serious.”
Fiscal depute Roderick Urquhart said that Shepherd started to punch a mirror on a wardrobe and piece of the flying glass struck the young woman on the stomach.
She was past her due birth date at the time.
Mr Urquhart said: “There was a large wound on her stomach. An ambulance was called and paramedics stemmed the blood before she was taken to hospital.
“The girl could not feel her baby moving, but an ultrasound was carried out and it was established the baby was well.”
Mr Urquhart added that the wound had started to clot and the initial assessment was it was superficial and that the baby was unharmed.
But she was looking “very grey” so she was anaesthetised and the baby was delivered unharmed by section.
The fiscal depute said: “An obstetrician discovered a four to five centimetre (up to two inches) cut in the young woman’s uterus.
“Both the surgeon and obstetrician say the injury could have become life-threatening to both mother and the baby, and the obstetrician said the baby was very lucky not to have been harmed.”