Thug punched and kicked unconscious man
A THUG punched and kicked a man on the head as he lay unconscious on the ground.
Livingston Sheriff Court heard witnesses saw John McReady, 21, and his victim fighting in a car park near flats in Stoneyburn at 10.30pm on November 20 last year.
“They saw the complainer and McReady trading punches and kicks,” depute fiscal Claire Martin said.
“The accused was then seen to trip the complainer to the ground where he lay motionless. McReady sat astride him and punched him to the face and body.
“The witness looked out and saw the accused kicking the complainer while he was on the ground at least three times to the face.”
Neighbours who had witnessed the attack ran out to help the victim.
“McReady was still at the locus and made mention of the complainer pulling a knife on him before running off,” Ms Martin added. “Police later took a knife from the complainer’s possession when he was in hospital.”
When paramedics arrived at the scene the victim was unconscious but he later regained consciousness and was taken to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary.
He suffered bruising to the eyes and face and also a number of soft tissue cuts to his face and body. The victim was unable to open his eye when he was admitted due to swelling and was seen by an opthamologist before discharging himself.
Police traced McReady and he was arrested and taken to Livingston Police Station.
McReady, described as a prisoner of Edinburgh Prison, pled guilty to assault to injury.
His solicitor, Gordon Henderson said: “He is the first to realise that he is extremely lucky that the complainer’s injuries were as minor, and I use that word advisedly, as they were.
“My client was with his friend and he had some difficulties with the complainer in the past.
“On this evening he was approached by the complainer who came out his property near this carpark.
“Having started what he thought was a square go, which he knows he should not have, the complainer pulled out a knife and that took everything off a level playing field.
“It left my client apprehensive about what was going to happen to him and thought he could have been stabbed.
“Collaboration of that position comes from the police statement that a knife was taken from the complainer by paramedics and handed to the police.
“When this knife was pulled on him he managed to get the better of the complainer and saw red and it led to the rest of the assault.
“The complainer refused to give a statement to the police and said I will deal with the matter myself.
“So while I am not seeking to minimise what my client did I do think it is very important to put it into context.
“He does have a record and that includes offences of assault so I am not going to say for a second that he is an angel himself.
“But he was not the instigator in this incident and was not the person who produced a weapon and not the person who has made threats since to sort matters out.”
Placing McReady on probation for a year Sheriff Donald Muirhead said the two months he had spent in custody on remand for the offence had been sufficient punishment.
Sheriff Muirhead added: “You agreed to have a fight with this man which was obviously the wrong thing to do and you have a record for assault.
“You took part in what seems to be described as a square go and even when he was unconscious on the ground you hit him. “On the other hand you have not caused him a great deal of damage, luckily.
“I am satisfied that the period of time you have spent in custody for the offence on remand is sufficient punishment but in the public interest a period of probation is required to deal with what appears to be a problem of getting involved in fighting and causing damage to other people.”