Joiner kept in prison for Christmas after assaulting his partner

A self-employed joiner who admitted assaulting his partner will spend the festive period behind bars after being refused bail at Lerwick Sheriff Court today.

James Neil Pearson, 42, had returned to his Brae home on Sunday after drinking at a friend’s house. Without provocation he threw a bag of rubbish at his partner before beginning to push, strike and kick her.

This caused the woman to become “extremely distressed” and she hid under the stairs. But Pearson dragged her out and continued the assault, grabbing her by the throat until she was struggling for breath.

When police officers from Lerwick arrived Pearson had left the house. According to procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie, it was only through “good luck rather than good management” that the victim’s injuries were not serious enough to require medical attention.

The court heard that Pearson, who has previous convictions, had only completed a year’s probation three days before the incident.

Defence agent Kathryn Gordon said that Pearson could not remember most of what had happened and “freely admits” he has an alcohol problem. He was “full of remorse” and disgusted with his behaviour and is eager to address his drink problem.

Honorary sheriff Malcolm Bell deferred sentence until 12th January for social inquiry reports, but remanded Pearson in custody. He said the assault represented a “clear escalation” in the defendant’s behaviour towards the victim, adding he was concerned Pearson would not be able to resist the added temptation to drink at this time of year.


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