Man jailed over drunken rammy


A GLAS­GOW man found drunk on Loch Lomond after a break-up tried to pull away from a boat sent to res­cue him and then bit a po­lice of­fi­cer as he was ar­rested.

James Roberts, 34, was jailed for five months for a se­ries of of­fences that started just be­fore mid­night on De­cem­ber 10, 2016.

Po­lice were on rou­tine pa­trol in Luss when they saw lights com­ing from the loch just off shore and ap­proached the beach.

They could see lights from two sail­ing boats, both in mo­tion and ap­par­ently cir­cling each other, Dum­bar­ton Sher­iff Court heard.

There was mu­sic com­ing from one of the boats, the Ro­mar, and po­lice were un­able to get the boat’s at­ten­tion.

After about five min­utes the mu­sic stopped and they saw Roberts exit the cabin and speak to a man on the other ves­sel.

Po­lice could tell he was slur­ring his words and fall­ing over and they fi­nally man­aged to get his at­ten­tion and directed him to the pier nearby. Out of con­cern for Roberts, po­lice called for the res­cue boat to at­tend and, as of­fi­cers dealt with the other man, Roberts ar­rived at the pier and be­gan shout­ing.

Fis­cal de­pute Martina McGuigan said Roberts then started his boat’s en­gine and be­gan to re­verse from the pier.

Po­lice joined the res­cue boat, which pulled up along­side Roberts and tied the boats to­gether.

“The ac­cused be­gan talk­ing to po­lice and ac­cept­ing he would have to re­turn and was aware both [boats] had been tied to­gether,” said Ms McGuigan.

“But, on hear­ing again he was to be ar­rested, he de­manded what right they had to do so. He be­gan head­ing to shal­lower wa­ter. He ig­nored in­struc­tions and at­tempted to pull away.”

The court was told Roberts had a dis­re­gard for him­self and the res­cue boat and po­lice of­fi­cers, so they boarded to take hold of him.

Roberts lunged at the po­lice but they got him back to the pier where he told them, “I have had my mo­ment and I will not do any­thing else”.

In­stead, as po­lice re­moved the hand­cuffs to put Roberts into the po­lice ve­hi­cle, he quickly moved his head and bit one of the of­fi­cers on the leg. The cop re­quired a splint and was put on re­stricted du­ties be­cause of his in­juries.

Roberts, of Crof­tend Av­enue, pre­vi­ously pleaded guilty to op­er­at­ing the Ro­mar while un­fit through drink or drugs, as­sault­ing an of­fi­cer by bit­ing him on the leg, as­sault­ing a sec­ond of­fi­cer by lung­ing to­wards him, caus­ing him to fall, and to be­ing on Loch Lomond with­out dis­play­ing lights, and at­tempt­ing to pull away from a res­cue boat to the dan­ger of crew and pas­sen­gers.

De­fence so­lic­i­tor Gemma Rathey told the court Roberts’ re­la­tion­ship with the mother of his child had bro­ken down and he had nowhere to stay, de­cid­ing to re­main on the Ro­mar after fish­ing that day.

She added that Roberts was well aware of the dan­ger of op­er­at­ing a ve­hi­cle while un­der the in­flu­ence but had not planned to move the boat that night.

Ms Rathey said: “He is an ex­pe­ri­enced sailor and would never put any­one or him­self in dan­ger.”

Sher­iff Si­mon Pen­der jailed Roberts for five months in to­tal and fined him £250, for which he will serve prison time in­stead.

James Roberts was jailed for five months

James Roberts, inset, had been in a boat on Loch Lomond when the in­ci­dent took place

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