Abuse from ex forced couple to take refuge

Sharon Laird and her boyfriend took refuge in the Howgate Centre to get away from her ex
Sharon Laird and her boyfriend took refuge in the Howgate Centre to get away from her ex

David Laird became abusive when he saw his former partner with her new boyfriend in Falkirk High Street.

The 49-year-old gave Sharon Laird and Robert Brittain so much abuse they took refuge in the Howgate Centre and waited inside until he went away before contacting the police.

At Falkirk Sheriff Court last Thursday Laird, from 85 Broomage Crescent, Larbert, was placed on a supervised community order for two years and told to attend the Government’s Caledonian domestic abuse programme.

He will also complete 72 hours unpaid work in six months and warned he faces jail if he does not co-operate fully.

The court was told Laird had been in a relationship with the woman for 32 years before they separated.

On June 22 he saw the couple as they were shopping and after shouting “there’s the happy couple”, swore and walked behind them.

Laird had admitted threatening and abusive behaviour and breaching bail conditions by repeatedly sending text messages and contacting her through social media between March 22 and June 22.

His lawyer said Laird, who is already subject to a community order with unpaid work, challenged some of the claims made against him, but Sheriff Derek Livingston said he was concerned at the number of similar offences he had committed.

He said: “He has a list of previous convictions for domestic abuse and every time he says it was somebody else’s fault.”