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Gremista winter times 2018 19

Brae bar assault costs man over £1,000

| Written by Shetland News

A MAN from Perth who was found guilty of assaulting a fellow drinker in the toilets of a Brae pub last year has been fined £750 and told to pay £500 in compensation.

Douglas Hughes, of Neave Court, had denied assaulting the man at the Northern Lights in Brae on 1 July last year and cited self-defence.

But the 50 year old was found guilty during a trial at Lerwick Sheriff Court on Thursday of butting the man, who he did not know, on the head to his severe injury.

The court heard that Hughes was at the pub after being invited there by a long-time friend, who was celebrating a 50th birthday with a Star Trek themed party.

The complainer, who suffered facial injuries in the incident and was taken to hospital, said he was using the urinal in the venue's toilets and heard someone saying something behind him.

He said he turned around, with Hughes then gripping hold of his wrists before striking him and causing him to fall to the floor.

Defence agent David Holmes, however, suggested that the complainer had been in the cubicle and pushed Hughes in the back before the incident kicked off.

Hughes said from the witness stand that he knocked on the cubicle door and shouted "drugs squad, come out" as a joke before using the urinal.

He said he was pushed forwards before one of his wrists was grabbed, with Hughes saying he headbutted the man and punched him in self-defence.

Hughes added that he felt he was unable to remove himself from the situation due to still suffering the effects of a broken leg from four years prior.

CCTV was shown in court of Hughes coming back to the bar and taking off his blue Star Trek style top before leaving, while it also saw the complainer walking back towards the bar area holding paper towels to his face.

Mackenzie noted that Hughes had lied to police in his interview the day after, with the accused admitting in court that he previously denied any knowledge of the incident because he was scared of getting in trouble.

Sheriff Ian Cruickshank said the complainer was a credible witness and found Hughes guilty of the charge.

"Mr Hughes' evidence does not cause me to have reasonable doubt," he said.

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