Brave victim shields dog from thug’s attack

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A man with learning difficulties bravely protected his dog as a drunken maniac rained down blow after blow upon them.

The terrifying assault happened on the peaceful banks of the River Carron as Alexander Brennan (44) set about the man and then attacked the first responders who tried to help the victim – punching one and then spitting on his female colleague’s face.

Appearing from custody at Falkirk Sheriff Court last Thursday, Brennan, 14 Tryst Road, Stenhousemuir, previously admitted the assaults he committed near Glensburgh Road, Grangemouth on March 14.

Procurator fiscal depute Siobhan Monks said: “The complainer, who has learning difficulties, was walking his dog at 8pm along the banks of the River Carron. He noticed Brennan was heavily intoxicated when he asked him directions to get to Stenhousemuir.

“The complainer did his best to provide the directions, but he soon felt uneasy and decided it would be best to walk away. He was then struck in the face by the accused.

“He dropped to the ground and rolled himself into a ball to protect himself. His dog lay down beside him and the accused shouted ‘What’s that dog looking at?’.

“The complainer saw the accused drawing back his leg and thought he was going to kick his dog, so he covered the dog with his arms, but exposed his own face.

“The accused then repeatedly kicked him in the face, causing cuts to his eyebrow and left ear. He walked around the complainer saying ‘Are you not getting up?’, before kicking him one more time on the side of his neck.

“It was clear to Mr Brennan the complainer had learning difficulties because he commented ‘What are people like you doing out at night?’.”

A passing first responders vehicle noticed the man lying on the ground and stopped to help.

The procurator fiscal depute said: “Brennan sat on the bonnet of the first responder vehicle drinking from a bottle as the first responders treated the complainer.

“When responders tried to get between Brennan and complainer, Brennan punched one in the face and then spat at the other, covering her glasses and her face.”

The court heard Brennan had a “bad record” and had not been going through a “particularly good time” with alcohol.

Sheriff John Mundy sentenced Brennan to nine months in prison backdated to March 16.