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Friday court round-up — ‘Show yourself, big man’ and cider-fuelled assault

A round-up of court cases from Tayside and Fife.

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A brawler lost a tooth in an impromptu “wrestling match” on a Perthshire village street.

Offshore worker Daniel Keenan shoved his hand into rival Darren Fraser’s mouth during the rammy, Perth Sheriff Court heard.

Keenan, 42, admitted assaulting Mr Fraser to his injury and impairment on June 6 last year.

The court heard Mr Fraser had been walking with a woman on Percy Street, Stanley, just before 9am.

Keenan, who is known to the pair, was driving in the area, pulled up alongside them and began swinging punches at Mr Fraser, missing him each time.

The two men began struggling with one another and Keenan dislodged a lower front tooth when he thrust one of his hands into Mr Fraser’s mouth.

The altercation continued for several minutes, before Keenan got back in his car and drove off.

Percy Street, Stanley
Percy Street, Stanley. Image: Google

A nearby shop worker saw what was happening and called police, who arrived to find
Mr Fraser covered in blood, with a gap where his tooth had been.

Solicitor Mike Tavendale, defending, said his client had clashed with Mr Fraser following an incident the night before.

“He accepts he lost his temper.

“The woman kicked his car and was holding his door shut with her foot. She then started filming this on her mobile.

“It was effectively a wrestling match between the accused and the complainer.”

He said Mr Fraser had tried to “gouge” his client’s eye.

Sheriff William Gilchrist fined Keenan, of Mill Street, Stanley, £400.

Crash kid curfew

A Dundee driver who crashed his car at the end of a high-speed police chase, causing devastating injuries to two schoolgirl passengers, has been spared jail. Robbie Mill tried to blame police for the smash on the A90 near St Madoes, which followed a terrifying 90mph pursuit through Bridge of Earn and Perth. He was placed on a curfew.

Robert Mill and the car crash he caused.
Robert Mill rolled his Corsa on the A90 during the police pursuit. Image: DC Thomson

Wrong street entirely

A 38-year-old man thought he was at a local drug dealer’s home when he smashed a bedroom window with a wooden pole and shouted: “show yourself, big man”.

Paul Fraser also struck a satellite dish and two cars with the pole in Elder Place, Rosyth, in the early hours of December 19 last year.

Dunfermline Sheriff Court heard he was “extremely intoxicated” and in the wrong street entirely.

Fraser, of Wedderburn Crescent, Dunfermline, appeared in court for sentencing after earlier admitting vandalism and behaving in a threatening or abusive manner.

Prosecutor Brogan Moffat told the court it was about 2:20am when Fraser began banging on windows outside the property.

A witness asked him to leave, then “heard a smash and saw the accused smash a bedroom window with a wooden pole.

“He then hit a sky dish with the wooden pole”.

Ms Moffat said Fraser was then heard by neighbours in the street shouting towards the witness: “Show yourself, big man.

“You think you are hard. Come out and face the repercussions, if you don’t come out, I will start smashing cars until you do.”

Fraser then hit two cars in the street with the wooden pole and police were called.

Fraser also admitted two charges of breaching bail conditions by being out of his address during curfew on dates in March and April this year.

In mitigation, his defence lawyer said Fraser was “extremely intoxicated” and “in fact believed he was at a local drug dealer’s house” but “he was in a different street entirely.”

She said he had intended obtaining drugs.

He was placed on an 18-moth drug treatment and testing order (DTTO).

VAT fraud, fled abroad

A Fife woman who pled guilty to £20,000 VAT fraud before disappearing abroad for years has finally been sentenced, a decade after her crime. Nicola Campbell made false VAT repayment claims to get money she was not due for the likes of personal mileage and groceries. She admitted her crime, then travelled to the Netherlands and stayed there for years.

Nicola Campbell
Nicola Campbell spent years in the Netherlands after pleading guilty.

Cider-fuelled assault

A Perth man who left a woman with a cut during a frightening assault has been jailed for 13-and-a-half months.

Calum MacDonald, 47, previously pled guilty to assaulting and injuring his victim at his then-home in the city’s St Andrew Street on April 6 2019.

He appeared from custody at Dunfermline Sheriff Court for sentencing.

Prosecutor Lee Corr said MacDonald and the woman had been drinking “strong cider” earlier in the day at his home and both became intoxicated.

At around midnight, MacDonald started shouting and swearing and kicked a table.

The fiscal depute said: “He then grabbed (the woman) by the throat with his right hand and pushed her to the ground.

“Her head hit the ground hard, causing a cut to the back of her head. It was bleeding heavily.

“She recalled trying to scream but she could not.

“He eventually released her but she remained dazed”.

Mr Corr said the woman fled and sought help at a local taxi firm, where staff contacted police.

The cut was closed with glue at Perth Royal Infirmary.

She also had bruising and a small cut to the right side of her neck.

Sheriff Susan Duff told MacDonald, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia in 2011: “This must have been a frightening and distressing experience for her.”

3rd strike

Former police officer  Darren Moore has been fined after shouting abuse at a woman in a row over parking, then damaging her car while reversing out of the street in Dundee following the heated confrontation. It was the ex-constable’s third conviction in as many years, following two previous court cases for child assault.

PC Darren Moore
Former police officer Darren Moore has been convicted for the third time in as many years.

Death in prison findings

The death of an HMP Cornton Vale inmate in was due to natural causes, a fatal accident inquiry has determined.

The inquiry took place in May this year after Victoria Teresa Black, 49, collapsed at the prison near Stirling and died in Forth Valley Hospital on January 11 2022.

She had been sentenced to five years, 219 days in prison in October 2020, for drugs offences.

The inquiry heard she had a drug habit and other health issues.

She was on a cocktail of prescribed drugs and there was no evidence she had taken anything else in the days leading to her death.

Three days before, she had been complaining of headaches and pain from a leg ulcer and was later found, unresponsive, in her cell.

Drug misuse was suspected at that point and after an ambulance was called, first responders administered Naxolone, to no effect.

Cornton Vale sign
The tragedy happened at HMP Cornton Vale

She remained unconscious when taken to hospital and a CT scan showed brain swelling and bleeding and her condition worsened as time went on.

No surgical intervention was possible, the inquiry heard.

Cause of death was intracerebral haemorrhage.

Sheriff Krista Johnston concluded: “I did not find any facts to support that in the days and hours prior to her death Ms Black had consumed any drugs other than those properly prescribed to her.

“The most likely explanation then for the intracerebral haemorrhage from which she died is as stated within the post mortem report, namely underlying hypertension.

“Ms Black’s death was due to natural causes.”

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