‘Missing’ jurer dodges jail term
A juror who disrupted a trial when he repeatedly failed to show up to court has narrowly avoided jail.
Martin Lawrie, 31, was ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work after he pleaded guilty to contempt of court. However, it emerged he has only completed 40 hours so far.
Lawrie was back in the dock at Paisley Sheriff Court yesterday, where a sheriff told him he was close to being sent to prison over the uncompleted work.
His lawyer told the court he was “a workaholic” who buckled down and accepted all overtime that was offered to him, meaning he was left with no time to complete his community service, which was told to carry out a full 12 months ago.
Sheriff Susan Sinclair said she did not wish to send him to jail but that was precisely where he would be heading if he landed back in court in similar circumstances.
“I do not understand what it is that you do not understand,” she said and revoked the original order, replacing it with an identical one requiring him to once more carry out 200 hours of unpaid work in nine months.
She stressed that she was going to monitor his progress and that he would have to return to court in three months’ time, when she would expect him to have completed a third of the hours involved.
“This is a direct alternative to custody and if you do not do the order, you will go straight to jail,” she said.
He will return to court on May 14 this year for a review of his order.