15th November 2019
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‘Vicious and frenzied’ attack leads to jail sentence

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A man who carried out a “vicious and frenzied” knife attack has been sentenced to more than 21 months in prison at Lerwick Sheriff Court.

Adam Nelson, 30, whose address was given as Grampian Prison, admitted assaulting his victim in the town on 2nd February.

The court heard the victim had been afforded some protection by a thickly-padded “puffer” jacket he had been wearing.

A witness later described Nelson slashing at the victim’s knees and shoulders, resulting in him “shredding” the jacket.

Nelson had been due to stand trial by jury before Sheriff Ian Cruickshank on Monday.

But defence agent Tommy Allan told the court Nelson was admitting an amended charge.

Nelson pleaded guilty to presenting a knife with a six-inch blade at his victim and repeatedly attempting to strike him on the body with it.

Among those who witnessed the attack from nearby houses which overlooked the scene was a 13-year-old boy.

Procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie said the offence had happened at around midday in a “new-ish housing development” with families living nearby.

He told the court Nelson had been visiting the address while significantly intoxicated.

Mr MacKenzie said the complainer and his brother arrived, and Nelson removed a large kitchen knife from a drawer. He added Nelson had chased his victim into the garden.

“The accused made repeated thrusts with the knife at the complainer, who was able to effectively dance and jump out of the way of the blows.”

But he added three cuts had appeared on the thick puffer jacket the victim was wearing.

Defence agent Tommy Allan said Nelson’s position was that he had been challenged by the man and his brother inside the house before the incident happened outside.

“Common sense would suggest everybody should be thankful this incident was not a great deal worse than it was,” he said.

He added that drugs had been an issue for Nelson, and said his client had been having some problems at home at the time of the offence.

“He was arguing with his family. That put a strain on his relationship and led to him starting to take drugs again.”

Mr Allan said Nelson has been seeking help and wanted rehabilitation.

Sheriff Cruickshank told Nelson: “What I’ve heard is this was a vicious and frenzied attack and it is only by extreme good fortune that there was no significant injury inflicted on the complainer.”

He addd that Nelson had a “significant record” which included use of a knife.

“There is no other sentence appropriate than a custodial sentence,” he said.

The sentence of 21 months and two weeks was backdated to 4th February, when Nelson was first taken into custody.