A couple battered a random stranger in Dundee, leaving him severely injured, to steal a single scratch card and a gold chain.
Suzanne Halford and her accomplice pounced on their victim and carried out the vicious robbery, before leaving him lying in a stairwell.
Halford, 50, rummaged through the victim’s pockets while her male partner-in-crime – a 45-year-old who has since died – throttled him and rained blows upon him.
Halford admitted assault to severe injury and robbery in Hepburn Street, Dundee, on July 20 2020.
She admitted that while she was acting with another they pulled the man to the ground and knelt on his chest, before placing hands round his throat to restrict his breathing and punching him repeatedly on the head.
‘Played lesser part’
Sheriff Alistair Carmichael placed Halford under supervision for 12 months and ordered her to carry out 150 hours unpaid work as an alternative to prison.
He said: “You pled guilty to a serious offence but your part was the lesser part and you were pressured into doing it – but you were involved art and part in a nasty robbery.
“It would normally be custody but you had no previous convictions and it took place almost four years ago and you have not offended since.”
Dundee Sheriff Court was told the male accused died less than two months before the case was due to be brought to trial.
Fiscal depute Andrew Harding told the court the victim had entered the common close at Hepburn Street at 3.45pm.
He saw both accused on the stairwell and heard the male mutter something, which he ignored.
As he walked past, he was grabbed from behind and dragged to the floor.
He tried to protect himself by holding his attacker’s hands but the punches to his face kept coming.
A neighbour heard the commotion and opened their door to see the man kneeling on the victim while Halford rifled through his pockets.
The neighbour shouted “get off him” before running over to help the bleeding man, who had marks on his neck.
“It was the next day that the witness noted he had a golden Italian chain that he believed may have been stolen,” Mr Harding added.
The chain was worth £200.
Solicitor Ross Donnelly, defending, said: “In practical terms what she did was essentially remove the items from the complainer.
“She is grateful for the opportunity to clarify that.
“She is now in a far healthier relationship than the one she was in with the co-accused.
“The court may treat her sympathetically but it is still a serious matter.”