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Dingwall drunk branded 'a perennial pain in the side of police' sentenced to a year in jail

By Ali Morrison

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A drunk Dingwall man who abused police while waiting to be sentenced for a similar offence 10 months earlier was told he was "a perennial pain in the side of the police in the execution of their duty".

Sheriff Ian Cruickshank jailed 46-year-old Daniel Harkness of Peffery Road for a total of a year after he admitted two charges of threatening or abusive behaviour.

Harkness was told: "You have two matters before the court. One in November and then another in September which is an almost carbon copy while you were awaiting sentence on the first."

Sentence had previously been deferred for a background report.

Fiscal depute Robert Weir had told the court that Harkness was being taken to Burnett Road Police Station on November 20, 2022 and began shouting and swearing at an officer, threatening to "put his hand down his throat and rip his heart out".

He also threatened to "knock your head off your shoulders" such was his intoxication, Inverness Sheriff Court heard.

Mr Weir told the Sheriff that Harkness also fired racist abuse in the direction of officers who later searched him and found a butter knife tucked in his belt.

The second offence occurred on September 8 this year after police were called to Harkness's home to investigate a disturbance.

Harkness was taken into custody but again directed abuse at the officers about their colour and sexual orientation which also included comments that were racially and religiously prejudicial.

Solicitor Marc Dickson said: "He has a poor record and his difficulty is entirely alcohol related. But it is no excuse,. He has no recollection of why he was arrested, or is he aware of how he came into the possession of the cutlery knife, which is like a butter knife.

"He has no issues with people of a different colour or sexual orientation. But when he is intoxicated, he becomes aggressive and abusive whenever anyone is in his proximity," Mr Dickson added.

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