Party at­tack

Rutherglen Reformer - - FRONT PAGE - Court re­porter

A man who at­tacked some­one at a drink-and drug-fu­elled Ruther­glen party has been told “only a sub­stan­tial sen­tence is ap­pro­pri­ate.”

Ray­mond Bell at­tacked David Black af­ter they fell out over a woman , leav­ing him in a per­sis­tent veg­e­ta­tive state.

A man caused a friend hor­rific brain in­juries by bru­tally kick­ing and stamp­ing on his head.

Ray­mond Bell launched his vi­cious at­tack on David Black af­ter they fell out over a woman at a drink- and drug­fu­elled party in Ruther­glen.

As a re­sult of the sav­age and sus­tained as­sault, Mr Black was left in a per­sis­tent veg­e­ta­tive state and re­quir­ing roundthe-clock nurs­ing care.

Bell, 29, had de­nied re­peat­edly punch­ing and kick­ing his friend on the head and body un­til he fell down on Novem­ber 1, 2014.

He also de­nied kick­ing and stamp­ing on Mr Black’s head as he lay on the floor to his per­ma­nent dis­fig­ure­ment, per­ma­nent im­pair­ment and dan­ger of life.

Af­ter lis­ten­ing to ev­i­dence from wit­nesses who were at the house in Lochaber Drive, Ruther­glen, a jury at the High Court on Glas­gow last month con­victed Bell of at­tempted mur­der.

At the High Court in Liv­ingston yesterday, trial judge John Mor­ris handed him an ex­tended sen­tence of 12 years, with a pun­ish­ment part of nine years in cus­tody and a post-re­lease su­per­vi­sion pe­riod of three years.

The judge back­dated the sen­tence to 21 Novem­ber 2014 when Bell was first re­manded in cus­tody.

Tony Graham QC, de­fend­ing, said there was lit­tle he could say in mit­i­ga­tion in the light of the jury’s ver­dict.

He said: “There are dev­as­tat­ing in­juries to the com­plainer, which was ob­vi­ously the great­est ag­gra­vat­ing fac­tor in this case.

“This was an in­ci­dent born of drink and prob­a­bly drug abuse on the part of ev­ery­one dur­ing the course of a party.”

He said the as­sault was the re­sult of a dis­pute be­tween the two friends over a “lady” called Sa­man­tha at the party who was “look­ing for another suitor”.

He added: “It per­haps goes to show the na­ture of temp­ta­tion amongst all par­ties when drink is taken and drugs are used and emo­tions run high.

“Even those who are friendly with one another can find them­selves in a sit­u­a­tion which dev­as­tates the qual­ity of life.

“This is a crime which wasn’t planned. This is a crime which has been the re­sult of cir­cum­stances at the gath­er­ing.”

He said Bell’s pre­vi­ous con­vic­tions were “per­haps elo­quent of his lifestyle” and he ac­knowl­edged that the court would re­quire to im­pose a sig­nif­i­cant prison term.

Pass­ing sen­tence, tem­po­rary judge Mor­ris told Bell: “The jury con­victed you of at­tempted mur­der and as you’ll ap­pre­ci­ate that’s a very se­ri­ous of­fence.

“In this par­tic­u­lar case you’ll also ap­pre­ci­ate the con­se­quences of your ac­tions were very grave in­deed for the vic­tim.

“Although the vic­tim is still alive, he’ll con­tinue to have no qual­ity of life what­so­ever.

“In those cir­cum­stances, you’ll ap­pre­ci­ate only a sub­stan­tial sen­tence is ap­pro­pri­ate in your case.”

Scene

The in­ci­dent took place at a party in Lochaber Drive

Land The new school is set to be built near this land off Har­vester Drive

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