Stranraer Sheriff Court

AN Irishman who caused havoc on a late night train was told by Sheriff Kenneth Robb that he was “a bit old to be playing Thomas the Tank Engine” when he returned to Stranraer Court for sentencing on Monday.

Wednesday, 9th March 2011, 4:06 pm

Forty-eight-year-old Brian Fitzpatrick, from Dublin, admitted running into the drivers cab, holding the door closed and refusing staff entry and committing breach of the peace on the Ayr to Stranraer train.

Fiscal Depute Kay Christie said that Fitzpatrick was the only passenger on the train as it neared it’s destination on February 15. He began to panic after suffering from chest pains during the journey and pulled the emergency cord stopping the train 200 metres from the platform. The driver left his cab to reset the cord and when he had walked past him, the accused took off towards the empty cab closing the door behind him. The driver quickly returned and tried to reason with Fitzpatrick, but he refused to come out. The police were then contacted and a staff member applied the emergency brake to disable the train. Officers arrived to find Fitzpatrick still in the driver’s cab.

Defending, solicitor Margo Nichol told the court that this “bizarre incident” happened after the accused started to act irrationally after fearing he was suffering a heart attack.

Sheriff Robb sentenced Fitzpatrick to 40 days in prison.

A TWENTY-year-old Minnigaff man was fined £120 by Sheriff Kenneth Robb at the court in Stranraer on Monday after a “melee” between two families.

Martin Gillespie, 2 Holmpark Drive, admitted, while acting with others, shout, swear and offering to fight with people in Holmpark Drive on February 20 last year.

Procurator Fiscal depute Kay Christie told the court that the accused had been out drinking in Newton Stewart and had been assaulted, receiving a facial injury. He the returned home in a “distressed and angry” state, said the Fiscal. The family of the man who allegedly assaulted him lived opposite, and as Gillespie walked home a disturbance occurred leading to “a melee between the two families”.

In mitigation, agent Ian Milligan said the Gillespie had sustained quite a nasty facial cut. He then became involved in the “much wider“ incident near his home. The solicitor added that there had been no repeat of the unpleasantness as both parties had “come their senses”.

A NEWTON Stewart man will go on trial later this month after denying fighting with a woman at an address in the town.

John Ringland, 52, 44 Arthur Street, is accused of behaving in a threatening manner, shouting, swearing, fighting with Victoria Barclay and breaking a glass door with a baseball bat at his home on either November 27 or 28 last year.

ASSAULTING a woman while on bail for a previous assault landed a Stranraer man in jail on Monday at the Sheriff Court in Stranraer.

Stewart Campbell, 41, 21 King Street, Stranraer, pled guilty to assaulting Isabella Donnan in Glenluce in January. He also admitted assaulting June Westran on February 11, therefore breaking his bail conditions.

Fiscal depute Kay Christie said that the accused and the complainer on the first charge had an on/off relationship and both had been drinking that day at his home. Ms Donnan had then left to return to her own house but Campbell had arrived there later in the afternoon, grabbed her and threw her out of her own home. The second assault also happened after the accused had been drinking.

Sentencing, Sheriff Kenneth Robb put Campbell on probation for the first assault but sentenced him to a total of five months in prison for the second assault and the breach of bail.

SENTENCE was deferred on a 25-year-old man who threatened to harm himself with a knife after a fall out with his former girlfriend in Newton Stewart in October 2009.

Michael McBain, who now lives in Lancaster, admitted assaulting Samantha Lowrie at 29 Glebe Crescent, Newton Stewart, by striking her on the head and biting her on the arm to her injury. He also plead guilty to threatening to harm himself.

Fiscal Depute Kay Christie said the argument started between the two parties, who have a young child, after the complainer found texts on the accused’s phone from another female. They had argued and the disagreement turned physical when the accused had struck the complainer on the side of the head. They had then gone back to sleep before waking up at around 10am when McBain was told the pack his bags and leave by the complainer.

McBain had then got a knife and ran it along his throat drawing blood. As the tension between them mounted the complainer had lifted her arm to protect herself as she was “scared at what he might do” explained the Fiscal. McBain bit her arm. She then ran to a neighbour an the police were called. When they arrived they found McBain taking about feeling suicidal. Both parties were taken to hospital where the complainer was found to have minor injuries.

McBain will return to the court on April 5 after Sheriff Kenneth Robb called for background reports.

A WHAUPHILL man who was accused of taking photos of a schoolgirl on a bus without her permission was admonished by Sheriff Kenneth Robb at the court on Tuesday after being of good behaviour.

Kenneth Starks, 58, 5 Main Street, was accused of placing her and other schoolchildren in a state of fear and alarm on a service bus travelling between Whauphill and Newton Stewart on October 7, 2009.

But the Sheriff warned Starks not to get himself into a situation like that again.

A GLENLUCE man was placed on the sex offenders register for three years on Tuesday at Stranraer Sheriff Court after admitting spying on two nine-year-old girls in a swimming pool changing room in Stranraer.

Fifty-seven-year-old Brian Weightman, Highbank, Auchenmalg, returned to the court for sentencing after pleading guilty at an earlier diet to looking underneath the partition door of a changing cubicle at the girls, who were in a state of undress, at the Ryan Centre, Stranraer on March 29 last year.

This was the second time the accused had been convicted of this type of offence, noted Sheriff Kenneth Robb, who also put Weightman on probation for three years, ordered him to join a sex offenders group and carry out 240 hours of unpaid work. He was also warned by the Sheriff to keep away from sporting activities involving females who were under 18 years of age. The sheriff commented on the accused’s despicable conduct in comparison with the girls commendable and impressive behaviour in reporting him.

A “vulnerable individual” was ordered to 80 hours community service at the court in Stranraer on Tuesday after wasting police time.

Stuart Dougan, 29, 24 Dalrymple Street, Stranraer, admitted telling police officers, on November 17 last year, that he had been assaulted.

Defending, agent Michael Kilkerr described Dougan as vulnerable but added that he had apologised to the police for his actions.

A GATEHOUSE-of-Fleet man was sent to jail for six months at Stranraer Sheriff Court on Tuesday after admitting four charges, including attempting to kick a doctor who was examining him.

Simon Jamieson, 23, 50 Riverbank, admitted shouting, swearing and repeatedly kicking a door at McDowall Drive, Stranraer, on January 23 and obstructing a doctor and a nurse at the Galloway Community Hospital the same night, by lashing out struggling with them.

The accused also admitted failing to pay Radio Taxis, Stranraer a £9 fare after telling the driver to wait for him then disappearing and finally, breaking his bail conditions.

Jamieson’s solicitor Paul Feeney explained that the accused was trying to find his brother’s address in McDowall Drive but ended up making a nuisance of himself. In a state of intoxication he was then taken to the hospital for his own good.

Moving on to the taxi offence, the agent said that the accused had taken a taxi to his aunt’s house in Glenluce and had expected her to pay the fare. Finally, the lawyer told the court that he had broken his bail conditions after missing a bus.

Sentencing, Sheriff Kenneth Robb told the accused that “drink seems to have taken hold of you”.

A Stranraer teenager who denies assaulting a child will stand trial in April. Martin Wellbelove, 18, 20 Cairnview Crescent is accused a punching the child at an address in Stranraer on January 23.

A PENSIONER who denies making inappropriate comments to children will go on trial on April 25.

Sixty-seven-year old William Cumming, of Castle Bay Caravan Park, Portpatrick, is accused of making the comments on various occasions between May 1 and June 25 at the caravan site. He also denies a separate charge of resisting arrest by struggling with two police officers in Dashers Den, Portpatrick on July 5 last year.

A TEENAGE driver will appear at Stranraer Sheriff Court after admitting carless driving on the Baltersan straight near Newton Stewart in December last year.

Daniel Murray, 18, 19 St Ninian’s Crescent, Whithorn, admitting driving at excessive speed, overtaking four preceding vehicles in the face of an oncoming police vehicle, causing the police officer driving to take evasive action.

The case will be called again on April 5.

A STRANRAER man who denies exposing his private parts and gesticulating with them to pedestrians in Lewis Street, Stranraer in January 3 this year will go on trial on July 6.

William Nixon, 26, Annanbank, Lewis Street, is charged with causing fear and alarm to the pedestrians by his alleged actions.

A TRIAL date of July 6 was set for a forty-year-old man who denies abusing the emergency services last December.

Forty-year-old Kevin Bradley, 45c Princes Street, Newton Stewart, is accused of shouting and swearing at police and ambulance staff at Ewart Drive, Newton Stewart, on December 30.

A STRANRAER man appeared from custody on Monday at the town’s sheriff court to admit theft.

James Govan, 44, 29 Cairnview Crescent, pled guilty to taking a quantity of money from 14 Cairnview Crescent on February 27.

Sheriff Kenneth Robb sentenced Govan to 160 days in prison.

SENTENCE was deferred until next month on a driver who admitting dangerous driving after knocking a cyclist off his bike last weekend.

Thirty-nine-year-old Stephen Sharpe, 7 Lochview Crescent, Stranraer, appeared from custody to admit driving his van at excessive speed and under the influence of alcohol on the A75 and in London Road, McMaster Road and School Road, Stranraer, on March 5.

He also admitted colliding with Michael Morris, causing him to fall from his bike, injuring the cyclist and damaging both the bike and the van, then driving away, weaving across the carriageway, overtaking a preceding car and clipping the rear offside of it and narrowly avoiding colliding with Norman Craig, who was exiting a junction on his moped.

Sharpe also admitted failing to give two specimens of breath for analysis at Stranraer Police Station the same day.

The accused will return for sentencing on April 5.