Carluke teen scarred innocent bystander for life

Lanark Sheriff Court
Lanark Sheriff Court

A Carluke teenager who disfigured an “innocent bystander” for life in a town centre incident has been jailed for a year.

At Lanark Sheriff Court on Thursday, 19-year-old Gary O’Dwyer, of 32 Moorside Street, appeared for sentence deferred for reports having earlier been convicted of the incident on Carluke’s Market Street on June 6 last year when he assaulted a manby striking him on the head with a glass to his severe injury and permanent scarring.

The court had earlier heard that the assault had taken place while O’Dwyer was out socialising in the town centre and had become involved in an argument with the other man, who was described by Sheriff Nikola Stewart as “an innocent bystander.”

Reading background reports, the sheriff noted that O’Dwyer had claimed to a social worker that he had not deliberately ‘glassed’ the man but had only intended to throw lager iover him when the glass he was holding slipped and struck his victim in the face.

The sheriff, studying a picture of the victim’s injuries following the incidemt, noted that scarring requiring stitches on both sides of his face did not support O’Dwyer’s claim of accidental injury.

A solicitor for O’ Dwyer said that it had been decided not to press the point of whether the glass was thrown or forced into the victim’s face; “He (O’Dwyer) accepts that the glass struck the complainer and caused the injuries. It is acxcepted that it was a blow struck by the glass which caused the injuries.”

The sheriff then noted that O’Dwyer had been in custody on another matter since the June 2015 incident before the court that day,

The defence solicitor said that this had been for another assault which happened after the Market Street one and he’d served a sentence for that while waiting for this earlier attack to come to court.

He claimed that O’Dwyer had used that time in custody to start to address some of his problems using the support services available.

He was “a young delinquent at huge risk but it is not his safety that is the issue here.”

The solicitor asked that some form of community payback order be considered.

However, Sheriff Stewart commented that O’Dwyer had already been on such an order when he attacked his victim in Market Street: “so that didn’t seem to do much good.”

She said she was particularly worried by O’Dwyer’s version of events told to social workers,

“He tells them that he he attempted to throw lager over the complainer and the glass slipped from his hand.

‘‘That is attempting to replay the incident he is pleading guilty to.”

She added that O’Dwyer had made references “that are not very complimentary to the complainer.”

The solicitor replied that the victim “had been in trouble with the police” himself.

The sheriff said, nevertheless, there had been no excuse for the assault.

“This was an horrendous, unprovoked attack.”

She jailed O’Dwyer for twelve months.