Tail­gat­ing driver ter­rorised his ex

Court: Is­lan­der jailed for ‘atro­cious be­hav­iour’

The Press and Journal (Highlands & Islands) - - News Highlands & Islands -

A 30-year-old man who re­peat­edly tail­gated and then re­versed into the car of his ex-girl­friend with the aim of “in­tim­i­dat­ing and fright­en­ing” her has been jailed for 10 months and banned from the road for al­most four years.

Asif Muham­mad, of This­tle Court, Virkie, pleaded guilty to driv­ing his ve­hi­cle dan­ger­ously on 21 May last year on the A970 Grut­ness to Hill­swick road.

He re­peat­edly tail­gated and over­took the other ve­hi­cle, swerv­ing from side to side, swerv­ing in front of it and stop­ping his ve­hi­cle, caus­ing the other driver to take eva­sive ac­tion.

He also ad­mit­ted be­hav­ing in a threat­en­ing or abu­sive man­ner by re­peat­edly phon­ing his former part­ner, shout­ing, swear­ing and is­su­ing threats.

Muham­mad then as­saulted his ex by threat­en­ing to crash into the car she was a pas­sen­ger in be­fore re­vers­ing his car into it, and as­sault­ing a man who was also trav­el­ling in the ve­hi­cle to his in­jury.

Procu­ra­tor fis­cal Dun­can Macken­zie said the in­ci­dent started at 9.30pm when the com­plainant, who had been in a co­hab­it­ing re­la­tion­ship with Muham­mad, told him she wanted to leave.

He told her to take her things and get out, and later that night an­other man ar­rived to col­lect her.

They drove past her com­pan­ion’s house, re­alised Muham­mad was sit­ting in his car out­side the man’s ad­dress and elected to travel past the junc­tion.

At that stage he be­gan fol­low­ing them so closely that his head­lights were no longer vis­i­ble in the rearview mir­ror. The fis­cal said that be­hav­iour con­tin­ued for around 5-10 min­utes.

Muham­mad sub­se­quently phoned his ex and told them he was go­ing to crash into them. Hav­ing parked across two lanes, he then re­versed at speed into their car “with such force that both airbags in­flated”, caus­ing sub­stan­tial dam­age to the ve­hi­cle and leav­ing the man with whiplash-type in­juries.

When po­lice ar­rived Muham­mad “lied through his teeth” and claimed it was they who had been fol­low­ing him.

De­fence agent Tommy Al­lan said it was “clearly atro­cious driv­ing” and his client “strug­gles to be­lieve he was ca­pa­ble of all this”.

The break-up and dif­fi­cul­ties at his work led him to be­come “hys­ter­i­cal and anx­ious”, though since his re­lease on bail he has man­aged to calm down.

Sher­iff Philip Mann de­scribed it as an “ap­palling and atro­cious piece of of­fend­ing” with the purpose of “in­tim­i­dat­ing and fright­en­ing your ex part­ner and her com­pan­ion”, while also pos­ing a risk of in­jury or harm to other road users.

Muham­mad had to un­der­stand that “you’re the per­son who threw the pedal into the pool”. The sher­iff sen­tenced him to 10 months in jail and dis­qual­i­fied him from driv­ing for 46 months.

“Un­der­stand that you’re the per­son who threw the pedal into the pool”

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