Sheriff issues jail threat
A MULL man has been told he could end up in jail if he continues to harass his elderly mother who suffers from dementia.
Callum MacDougall, 48, was arrested on June 25 outside his 84-year- old mother house at Fountainhead on the island.
Oban sheriff court heard on Tuesday that it was the third time MacDougall had been arrested for using threatening and abusive language towards his elderly mother.
Defence lawyer, Laura McManus, said MacDougall, who lives nearby at Ardmeanoch View, often visited his mother when sober and was ‘helpful and caring’.
She said: ‘He finds it difficult to cope with his mother’s mental deterioration, and when drunk on the date in question, acted in an inappropriate manner.’
Sheriff Ruth Anderson, QC, replied: ‘I can’t quite understand the connection, I’m afraid.
‘ Yes, if you are feeling a bit down you might pour yourself a couple of ‘large ones’, but why that would make you want to shout and swear at your elderly, vulnerable mother, I just don’t see the link.
‘I note that there have been similar complaints against you in 2011 and 2014, and again it was your mother who was the complainer.’
At a previous hearing in July, Sheriff Colin McKay had said it was clear Mr MacDougall had a ‘serious issue with alcohol’.
MacDougall had since attended addiction treatment in Oban and had been progressing well.
He was banned from visiting Mull when he appeared at Oban sheriff court on July 8, the only exception being when carrying out his duties as a delivery driver. He has been living in a guest house in Oban since that date.
Sheriff Anderson deferred sentence until December 8 and lifted the restrictions on MacDougall visiting the island and his mother.
She said: ‘You are released from the conditions of your bail order, but I am warning you now, any repetition of the abusive and horrible behaviour towards your elderly mother and I won’t hesitate to consider custody.
‘The court will have to take a look at sending you to prison.
‘I understand you are the only child of your family left on the island, and you may find that difficult, but your mother is visited four times a day by carers so there are no physical demands on you as such.
‘At 84, your mother may not have much longer left, so it is now up to you to make up to her for what has happened.’