Pair locked up overnight af­ter ar­riv­ing at court too drunk to have cases heard

The Oban Times - - News 11 -

A WOMAN and a man were re­manded in cus­tody af­ter they ar­rived at Fort Wil­liam sher­iff court too drunk to have their cases heard.

Mar­garet Gem­mell, of Young Place in Fort Wil­liam, and Gary Mil­li­gan, of East Kil­bride, were to ap­pear on sep­a­rate charges last Tues­day, but ended up held overnight and charged with con­tempt of court.

Elec­tri­cian Mil­li­gan, 33, was in the dock at the town’s sher­iff court on Tues­day 21 July, to plead guilty to a string of driv­ing of­fences - in­clud­ing drink driv­ing - but was in­co­her­ent to the point he could not in­struct his so­lic­i­tor on his de­fence. He ap­peared be­fore Sher­iff Richard David­son again on Wed­nes­day.

De­fence so­lic­i­tor, Hamish Mel­rose, said: ‘He was here speak­ing to me at 10am. But his case wasn’t called un­til 3pm. By that time he had taken lunch break drinks, which topped up the al­co­hol he had taken the night be­fore and he was the worse the wear for drink­ing.’

Mil­li­gan, who lives with his par­ents in East Kil­bride, is work­ing on the con­struc­tion of a school in Fort Wil­liam and has been in the area for five weeks. He pleaded guilty to driv­ing a col­league’s car with­out per­mis­sion or a li­cence and af­ter con­sum­ing al­co­hol.

Sher­iff David­son has re­quested a back­ground re­port and sen­tenc­ing was de­ferred to Septem­ber 15.

Gem­mell was so drunk on her ar­rival at court she re­fused to be searched by se­cu­rity guards and claimed she had been ‘sin­gled out’.

She ap­peared last Wed­nes­day morn­ing on two charges of con­tempt of court and for as­sault­ing a po­lice of­fi­cer.

Gem­mell pleaded guilty to kick­ing a fe­male of­fi­cer on the leg af­ter she was ar­rested on March 20 this year.

The 35-year- old was de­scribed as ‘ vi­o­lent and ag­gres­sive’ dur­ing the in­ci­dent by procu­ra­tor fis­cal, Kelly Mitchell.

Her de­fence so­lic­i­tor, Stephen Kennedy, told the court that Gem­mell had re­cently ‘come off’ a methadone pro­gramme at the time of the in­ci­dent and ‘ was not find­ing it easy’.

He added that Gem­mell’s use of al­co­hol had con­trib­uted to her state on ar­rival at court the pre­vi­ous day, but that she ‘ was not some­one to bury her head’.

Sher­iff David­son said: ‘ She will not be the first per­son who has sub­sti­tuted drug ad­dic­tion with al­co­hol and it is to Miss Gem­mell’s credit that she has been able to tackle her ad­dic­tion.’

Sher­iff David­son em­pha­sised the se­ri­ous­ness of the as­sault charge and said she was ‘in se­ri­ous trou­ble’.

He re­quested a back­ground re­port ahead of her sen­tenc­ing on Septem­ber 15.

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