Ex-Cornet jailed for eight months

Ex-Hawick Cornet George Young was jailed for eight months at Jedburgh Sheriff Court yesterday (Thursday) after "a vicious assault" on a man at a Hawick race meeting.

Young, 27, of The Flex Farm, who lead the 1999 Common-Riding festivities, appeared on indictment and admitted punching George Campbell to his injury at Hawick Moor on August 10.

The offence happened at the last flapping fixture of the season and followed an argument over a horse in which Young had a part-share. Mr Campbell was treated at Hawick Cottage Hospital for bruising and lacerations to his eye.

A second assault, just a month later, on September 12, happened at the town's Howegate and left victim Ian Turnbull in danger of losing his sight. Young admitted punching Mr Turnbull to his severe injury after an argument over the previous attack.

Mr Turnbull suffered serious eye damage, severe headaches and blurred vision, and was treated at Edinburgh's Eye Infirmary.

Procurator Fiscal Graham Fraser said: "If ever an offence brought home to the people of the Borders the consequences of the inappropriate abuse of alcohol then this was such an occasion."

He added: "Young should have known better having a significant role in society."

Mr Fraser described the assault on Mr Campbell as "disgraceful and vicious."

Young's solicitor Alison Marshall said her client deeply regretted his behaviour and bringing the Common-Riding and his family into disrepute.

Sheriff Martin Edington said he would be failing in his public duty if he did not jail the accused, whose wife broke down in tears when her husband was sentenced.