A Carnoustie man who beat up a friend in a row over a borrowed tenner has narrowly avoided going to jail.
At Forfar Sheriff Court on Thursday, James Robertson was ordered to carry out 270 hours of unpaid work within a year as part of a Community Payback Order that will also see him placed under supervision for the next 18 months.
The 23-year-old, of Links Parade in Carnoustie, pleaded guilty to an indictment alleging an assault on David Torrie on August 13 last year at the town’s Victoria Street, in which Robertson kicked and punched his victim, to his severe injury.
Depute fiscal Jim Eodanable said the victim had cycled to a local shop to buy cigarettes and met some friends there.
“The accused then cycled towards the group, asked the complainer about some money that he said he owed him and they argued.”
Robertson reacted by punching his former friend in the face and he fell into his bicycle, before the accused continued the attack by punching and kicking him.
He then walked off towards his house, Mr Eodanable added. The victim suffered elbow problems and has since returned to hospital on a number of occasions. The court heard he is expected to make a full recovery from the injury but it will take a number of months.
Defence solicitor Nick Markowski said: “My client is a man who had a lot of difficulties when he was younger and that left him with what he described himself as a chip on his shoulder.
“This happened over a year ago and there have not been any further difficulties in that period.
“He has been in a relationship with his girlfriend for almost three years and that coincides with his offending reducing dramatically. He has done a lot of growing up.”
The solicitor added: “This offence wasn’t a planned matter, it involved someone he had been friendly with and has asked me to apologise publicly to him.”
Sheriff Pino Di Emidio told Robertson: “This is an incident in which you inflicted significant injury to someone who had been your friend over £10 and you have put your liberty at issue because of it.”