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Court / Prison for man who harmed partner

A LERWICK man received a 19 month prison sentence on Thursday for various offences including assaulting his ex-partner.

Ryan Paterson appeared from custody after admitting the assaults on his former partner at a previous hearing. He also flouted an earlier undertaking that he would not contact her, as part of bail conditions, as an alternative to being jailed.

Lerwick Sheriff Court heard that 30-year-old Paterson had attacked his then partner in December 2018 after an argument about his behaviour.

He had grabbed her by the throat and threw her on the bed, compressing her throat so she had bruising on her neck and collarbone.

He also assaulted her on 19 May last year by striking her on the head and pulling a clump of hair from her head to her injury in an attack in Braewick Road.

He cycled off but returned to attack her again, this time forcing her down over a garden wall where she “sustained lumps and bruising” and scratches to her forearms.

Procurator fiscal Duncan Mackenzie said that the attack, which had been witnessed by a couple in their 80s, ceased when a male passerby intervened.

He attacked her again at a house in Peterhead on 24 July by seizing her neck and forcing her on the floor. This time he had been released on bail on 29 May on condition of not contacting his ex. All the offences were aggravated by assault of an ex partner.

He also admitted damaging a door at an address in Ladies Drive after the housing department had changed locks on the property.

Sheriff Ian Cruickshank said that Paterson had embarked on a course of conduct where he had humiliated and harmed his ex partner and thought nothing of disregarding his bail order.

The sheriff sentenced Paterson to a total of 19 months in prison backdated to 24 December. He also imposed a three-year non harassment order in which time he is not to contact the woman.

Paterson narrowly escaped having his sentence extended in the afternoon when the sheriff considered holding him in contempt of court after an outburst at the morning hearing when Paterson talked over the sheriff and court officials.

But he accepted an apology from Paterson’s defence agent Gregor Kelly who said that Paterson “apologised unreservedly for his actions”.