An Angus man who called a community warden a “kiddie-on copper” before launching a half-naked rant on a local bus just days after his release from jail has avoided going back behind bars.
William Haxton had shocked shoppers in Arbroath High Street with his drunken swearing after the boozed-up 43-year-old, described as having an “atrocious record”, lost his prescription for important medication.
He shouted and swore in the town centre, boarded a bus at the town’s Lordburn and eventually had to be wrestled to the ground and handcuffed by police who had received a string of phone calls from alarmed members of the public.
Haxton, of Annat Road in Montrose has been given a final chance by a sheriff following the August 23 incident and will spend the next four months on an electronic tag.
Depute fiscal Jill Drummond told Forfar sheriff court the incident kicked off shortly after 1pm when Haxton was seen shouting at an elderly couple, threatening to assault them.
A staff member from a High Street shop tried to intervene and then a community enforcement officer who arrived on the scene was verbally abused.
“There were numerous members of the public nearby, including children,” added Ms Drummond.
“The accused was then seen naked from the waist up, walking on and off a bus parked at a bus stop.”
When police arrived he was inside the bus, but flared up when officers tried to arrest him, and he continued shouting and swearing en route to Dundee headquarters, the court heard.
Haxton’s solicitor said his client had been free from an 18-month prison sentence on August 18 and was still on licence.
“He suffers from extreme anxiety. He had been given a prescription when he left prison and he lost that.
“He takes full responsibility, but has no memory of what happened and recognises the reprehensible nature of his conduct on that day.”
Sheriff Alison McKay told Haxton: “You are 43 years old and your record is, frankly, atrocious.
“If you come back before me you will leave the court with no option. The court can give you a chance but it cannot make you take advantage of that chance.”
Haxton’s restriction of liberty order will confine him to his home from 7pm to 7am daily.