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Court / Wind farm electrician fined £3,000 for assault

A THIRTY three year old industrial electrician who struck another man on the head with a glass during a disturbance in a Lerwick pub narrowly escaped a jail term but was instead sentenced to pay a substantial fine.

Lerwick Sheriff Court heard on Wednesday that the assault took place in the Douglas Arms pub on the night of an Old Firm football match which created a tense atmosphere.

However, procurator fiscal Duncan Mackenzie said in his narration of the case that it was not clear what exactly triggered the disturbance that led to the assault.

David Houston, of High Street, Johnstone, pleaded guilty to a charge of assault on 3 September 2022.

Mackenzie said Houston and his victim ended up in a vestibule area with other unidentified people also being involved.

Houston admitted striking his victim’s head with force which resulted in a minor injury.

Speaking in mitigation Houston’s solicitor Mr Maloney said his client and work colleagues from the wind farm construction site had been on a day out and an excessive amount of alcohol had been consumed.

He said his client had been manhandled by the victim prior to the assault.

Houston, he said, had previous convictions similar in nature and Sheriff Ian Cruickshank would be more than entitled to consider a custodial sentence.

However, Houston appeared to be remorseful and had pleaded at the earliest opportunity, the solicitor said. He is also engaging with Alcoholics Anonymous to tackle his drinking issue.

Maloney said the self-employed 33-year-old earns a considerable income and has worked all over the UK and in Europe.

Sheriff Ian Cruickshank said the use of a glass in assaulting the victim as “very serious indeed” but also described the circumstances of the assault as “unusual”.

He fined Houston £3,000 plus £175 in victim surcharge. In addition, Houston has also been ordered to pay his victim £1,000 in compensation.

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