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Moray man jailed for attack on stranger

By Ali Morrison

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A man character who "changes personality" with alcohol or drugs was jailed for 32 months earlier today.

Inverness Sheriff Court... Picture: Gary Anthony..
Inverness Sheriff Court... Picture: Gary Anthony..

John Fraser from Forres was also placed on a year's supervised release at the end of his sentence.

This means the 28-year-old will be sent back to prison if he doesn't observe conditions for psychiatric, mental health and drug and alcohol treatment.

Fraser was jailed today at Inverness Sheriff Court for viciously attacking a stranger on Pilmuir Road, Forres, with a piece of fencing.

The attack, which took place on November 16, left his victim with a broken rib.

Fraser was told he was very close to being sent to the High Court for a much longer sentence.

Sheriff Gary Aitken said: "A lifelong restriction order could be imposed which would mean you would be in prison indefinitely because you are assessed as a risk to society."

However the sheriff decided to deal with Fraser in his own court after hearing from defence solicitor Brent Lockie.

Mr Lockie said: "He is something of a Jekyll and Hyde young man.

"When sober he is polite, but when he drinks and takes drugs, his personality changes.

"He has no recollection of this and is appalled by his behaviour.

"He is also most genuine with his remorse and disgust with himself."

Fraser attacked three different people on the same day.

Fraser's first victim has gone to a bus stop in order to walk his niece home after she returned from work.

Speaking an earlier hearing, fiscal depute Alex Swain told the court that Fraser had approached the pair.

Ms Swain said: "He spoke to the woman, calling her 'baby' which made her feel uncomfortable.

"Then he flipped out and the man was pushed into a fence, which broke.

"Fraser repeatedly punched and kicked the man before he picked up a piece of broken wood and repeatedly struck the man with it on the head and body."

The woman screamed at Fraser to stop and phoned her husband for help.

However when the husband arrived with another relative, Fraser turned on both of them as well.

He began to flail his arms about and struck the husband on the head.

The court heard that the assault stopped briefly as the group tried to get the injured man home.

They were then met on Drumine Road by the woman's father.

But Fraser had followed and lashed out at the father, striking him on the head too.

Ms Swain said that when the group finally managed to get home, police quickly attended to discover the first victim in pain and bleeding from head wounds.

He was taken to Dr Gray's Hospital by ambulance and treated for a broken rib.

A piece of wood was also removed from his scalp and he received several stitches.

Fraser pleaded guilty to assaulting the man to his severe injury, as well as to separate charges of threatening and aggressive behaviour.

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