Taxi driver biter told by the sheriff - ‘You have been warned’
AN OBAN taxi driver is to receive compensation after a customer bit his leg and left the car without paying a £6 fare.
Darren Clark of Millbrae, Bunessan, on Mull, admitted the assault at Oban sheriff court on Tuesday after a drunken night out in the town on May 29 of this year.
The 18-year- old fisherman asked the driver to take him to Dunbeg, before changing his mind and requesting he be taken to a party elsewhere in the town.
Halfway through the journey, Clark stopped the driver and paid him just £2.60 of the £ 6 fare.
Procurator fiscal Eoin McGinty told the court: ‘ When asked for the fare Darren Clark then leant across and bit the taxi driver on his left knee.
‘The driver then hit him on the back of the head to make him stop, then the accused punched him on the face.’
But that wasn’t the end of Clark’s troublemaking, as he then arrived at the wrong flat and forced his way in to a stranger’s home, becoming aggressive and pushing both him and his neighbour to the ground. Clark pleaded guilty to behaving in a threatening and abusive manner and a further two counts of abusive behaviour for the second incident.
Defence solicitor Edward Thornton said: ‘It was only when the taxi stopped he realised he only had £2.60 He said he would go to a nearby cash point and would even leave his phone as an assurance that he wasn’t going to run away.
‘He then went to the wrong flat in his drunken befuddlement. He accepts full and complete responsibility for his behaviour.’
Sheriff Ruth Anderson, QC, ordered Clark to pay £250 compensation to the taxi driver and fined him £ 800. She said: ‘Nobody should have to put up with this in the course of their employment. You’re on the edge of losing your liberty and my advice to you is to stop drinking until you are old enough to know how to behave. You have been warned.’