19th August 2018
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Handcuffed man tried to run from police

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Trying to run away from police while still in handcuffs proved costly for a man who appeared from custody at Lerwick Sheriff Court today.

Christopher Watson, 31, of Lerwick’s Gilbertson Road, pleaded guilty to running away from police with intent to pervert the course of justice.

The court was told Watson had been arrested for non-payment of a fine and was taken in handcuffs to Lerwick Police Station around 5pm on Saturday. On arrival at the car park he asked if he could pull his jeans up properly, and was allowed to do so.

But Watson took the opportunity to escape and ran from the police down a lane. He slipped on ice, but then continued to flee. One of the police officers in pursuit also slipped, cutting his hand. Watson was eventually caught and explained himself by saying he “didn’t want to spend the weekend in custody”.

Defence solicitor Tommy Allan said Watson’s escape attempt had been “ill-advised” as he was still in handcuffs.  Monday’s hearing was told Watson had recently spent three weeks at sea on an “oil job”, on a boat stationed near an oil rig, and had only been home a matter of hours when he was apprehended. “The prospect of being confined [again] didn’t appeal to him,” Mr Allan said.

As Watson was in a position to pay his fine, Mr Allan said: “Hopefully he’s getting the gist of what’s required. He’s had a close shave with going to jail.” Fourteen days imprisonment would have been the penalty if the fine had not been paid.

Honorary sheriff Eric Peterson fined Watson £300 for Saturday’s incident and ordered him to pay the outstanding fine.

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