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Highland man jailed for biting and severely injuring toddler in Evanton, Ross-shire; handed six month prison sentence at Inverness Sheriff Court

By Ali Morrison

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Inverness Justice Centre. Picture: Gary Anthony.
Inverness Justice Centre. Picture: Gary Anthony.

AN expectant father was jailed for six months for biting and severely injuring a two-year-old child almost five years ago.

Scott Finnie appeared for sentence at Inverness Sheriff Court after initially “having a panic attack” and leaving the Justice Centre in a taxi as he dropped off his pregnant partner.

Finnie, who was described as an Inverness prisoner, had also previously been remanded in custody for 143 days when he failed to turn up for a previous court hearing but was later released on bail.

The 33-year-old had been convicted by a jury earlier this year of the serious assault, which occurred in a property in Evanton, Easter Ross on January 8, 2017.

Sheriff Sara Matheson had deferred sentence for a background report and a restriction of liberty order assessment, both of which had been completed successfully.

His solicitor, George Henry, had to explain to the sheriff why his client was not in the dock to be dealt with when the case called just after 10am on Friday morning.

He said that Finnie was “anxious and upset” when he arrived in a taxi but left in it after his partner got out.

The lawyer said his attempts to contact his client were unsuccessful.

A warrant was issued for Finnie’s arrest, but before it was executed, Finnie returned to court to learn his fate.

Mr Henry said his client had “suffered a panic attack”.

He told the court: “This is a serious matter but an alternative to custody is appropriate here.

“The offence took place five years ago and his property is suitable for a restriction of liberty order.

“He has a partner and a job - working in forestry in Aberdeen-shire - and has spent the equivalent of a 10-month jail sentence on remand.

"This seems to be an isolated but troubling incident,” Mr Henry went on.

Jailing Finnie, Sheriff Matheson told him: “There is no other appropriate sentence than imprisonment.”

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