Lochyside woman given year-long supervision order

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A Lochyside woman was placed on a year-long supervision order at Fort William Sheriff Court this week after she injured her husband on the neck and hand with a knife during an argument she herself described to police as ‘very violent’ .

Frances Young, of Arden House, Lochyside, appeared for sentencing after pleading guilty at an earlier court appearance to assault on May 19 last year at Arden Vale, Torlundy, Fort William.

Sheriff Eilidh MacDonald heard from Procurator Fiscal Robert Weir that Young, 60, had been watching television on the day in question when her husband, Alasdair, had returned.

‘He had consumed some alcohol, as had the accused, and he had brought home a pizza for them to share,’ said Mr Weir.

‘At some point that evening, they were both in the kitchen area and the accused was trying to open the pizza from its packaging and was struggling to do so.

‘The accused had a knife to deal with the pizza – and at this point it is accepted by the Crown that there was an element of provocation by the witness [Mr Young] as a result of which the accused turned round and lashed out with the knife, cutting the neck of the witness.

‘The witness had then tried to grab the knife and was successful in doing so.’

Mr Weir explained Mr Young had then contacted his son who took him to hospital in Fort William for treatment.

Three days later the matter was reported to the police after the accused gave her version of events concerning a separate matter involving a disturbance and details about the knife incident emerged.

Young had told police her husband had ‘smashed her over the head’ with an oven dish.

Mr Weir added: ‘Her husband accepts there was an element of provocation involved and that the injury [to his finger] was partly as a result of him trying to get the knife from the accused.’

Young’s defence agent, Michael Chapman, said his client had lodged a plea of guilty under provocation which had been accepted by the Crown.

‘She had been struck with an oven dish – not some light oven tray but quite a weighty object – and she accepts she retaliated when the knife was already in her hand.’

Mr Chapman told Sheriff MacDonald his client and her husband had been together since she was 16, but that over the last 10 years problems with alcohol had developed.

Sentencing her to a year’s supervision, Sheriff MacDonald told Young: ‘This is a very serious charge. It is always a serious matter when it involves a knife.

‘But I have listened to what has been said on your behalf and I understand the circumstances in which you found yourself.’