19th August 2018
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Thug jailed after violent struggle with police

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A “violent thug” who struggled with police officers after shouting abuse is today beginning a four month prison sentence.

John Hutcheson, 22, of Leaside in Firth must also serve an additional 80 days after breaching a supervised release order just three weeks before it was due to end.

Hutcheson was arrested on Sunday after a night of drinking in Brae went badly wrong.

He made a nuisance of himself and broke a beer pump at the Brae Hotel for no apparent reason.

A friend had persuaded him to leave before hotel staff felt safe enough to phone the police.

But Hutcheson “took to his heels” after police caught up with him at the Mid Brae Inn, only pausing to hurl insults at his pursuers – threatening to “slit their throats”.

Appearing from custody at Lerwick Sheriff Court today Hutcheson admitted swearing at police, running away from officers and struggling violently with them, as well as breaking the beer pump.

Procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie said there was a “brief pursuit” and a “brief, albeit violent, struggle” before Hutcheson was “subdued”.
He opposed bail, insisting Hutcheson could “be dealt with today” without the need for social work reports.

Mr MacKenzie said Hutcheson had committed a “flagrant” breach of his release order.  Hutcheson, he said, was under curfew with a condition not to drink alcohol.

Defence agent Tommy Allan said Hutcheson had taken his first drink since being released from custody in August.
He admitted the offences merited a custodial sentence, but he urged honorary sheriff Eric Peterson to call for background reports and release Hutcheson on bail.

Mr Allan said Hutcheson had managed to obtain an apprenticeship as a chef and had secured a tenancy on his own property.
“He’s made progress and it would be a shame not to give him credit for that.”

Honorary sheriff Eric Peterson went off the bench to consider his verdict.  When he came back he declined to call for reports, and sentenced Hutcheson to four months, reduced from six to reflect his early plea.  But he ordered Hutcheson be detained for a further 80 days to reflect the breach of the release order.   

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