Ross-shire teen found guilty of stabbing by jury at High Court in Inverness
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A JURY convicted a Ross-shire teenager of a stabbing after their numbers were depleted due to ill health and Covid.
Normally 15 jurors would be listening to evidence and deliberating their decision on 19-year-old Dingwall teen Campbell Brett, at the High Court in Inverness.
But the case was dogged by problems with Lord Armstrong discharging one juror early in the case due to ill health. Then this week as the jury considered their verdict for a second day, two other jurors fell ill.
It was confirmed before the jury reconvened for a third day that one had tested positive for Covid and another was awaiting a test result.
The judge decided to discharge them both and told the others to continue although there were only 12 – the minimum number allowed by law. Lord Armstrong reassured the remaining jurors that, given the precautions being taken to protect them, it was unlikely the infections had originated in the jury remote setting.
Brett had denied attempting to murder David Reid in a house in Hill Street, Dingwall on August 1, 2020 by repeatedly stabbing him on the body.
The jury returned a majority guilty verdict on the lesser charge of assault to severe injury under provocation.
The trial heard that Reid had been disarmed by Brett in an altercation in the house and then stabbed him several times. His defence counsel, Frances Connor, lodged a special defence of self defence.
Advocate depute Margaret Barron told the court that Brett had previous convictions, including two in the past two years, involving the use of a knife. He is currently serving a sentence at Polmont Young Offenders' Institution for another serious assault. Deferring sentence for reports, as Brett is under 21, the judge said: “You have been found guilty of a grave charge.” Sentence is at the High Court in Livingstone on November 25.