A man who tried to murder a police officer in Fife by stabbing him in the chest has been sentenced to 10 years and three months behind bars.
Graeme Davidson, 37, brutally attacked PC Derek Laing as he was responding to a report of a disturbance in Tayport’s Lundin Crescent on June 29.
Davidson, who was drunk, previously admitted the offence at a hearing at the High Court in Glasgow, and appeared back there today from custody for sentencing.
Lord Matthews imposed an extended sentence which will see Davidson serve a further three years on licence once the custodial part of his punishment is served.
Lord Matthews told him: “The community relies heavily on police officers who often put their lives at risk. The court must do what it can to protect them.”
The court had previously heard how Davidson was found sleeping in a bedroom at the property and became violent after questioning why officers were there.
He had been drinking since 8:30pm the night before, but PC Laing, 46, who had been stationed at St Andrews police office on the night in question, said he had “no cause for concern” when he arrived and subsequently tried to help Davidson find his clothes before leaving him sitting dressed on the bed.
Davidson, who was staying with his cousin, was not put in handcuffs or searched.
But a short time later the officer was standing in the hallway when he suddenly spotted the accused coming towards him “at speed” with his right hand raised and holding “a long, slender item”.
Advocate Margaret Barron, prosecuting, said Mr Laing initially hoped the object was a pen before, to his horror, realising that he was “in a fight for my life” as the knife hit his chest.
Reports from other officers described Davidson as “lunging” and “jumping” at their colleague, who had no time to react or reach for his protection.
A picture of the three-and-a-half inch long blade used in the attack was also shown to Lord Matthews during proceedings.
He was also told it left a “one centimetre puncture wound” that was “superficial … but could have been more significant”.
Mr Laing was treated by his colleagues before being taken to Ninewells Hospital in Dundee and was later discharged with two stitches.
The court also heard as well as being “greatly concerned for his life”, the police officer has been “struggling to cope with the effects on his wife and young family” since the incident and had sought help.
Davidson’s solicitor Chris Fyffe told the court the accused “suffered from mixed anxiety” and had been drinking “as a coping mechanism” the night of the incident.
Davidson’s not guilty pleas to assault, assault to danger of life, threatening or abusive behaviour and assaulting an officer in execution of their duty were accepted by the Crown.