Former Falkirk FC player slashed pal's face and neck with Stanley knife

An ex-footballer’s tragic life of drink and drug abuse hit rock bottom when he viciously struck out at a man’s neck and face with a razor sharp blade.

By Court Reporter
Friday, 11th September 2020, 3:45 pm
Updated Tuesday, 15th September 2020, 10:38 am

Derek Colquhoun (35), whose former clubs include Falkirk FC, Stirling Albion and East Fife, pulled a Stanley blade on his friend during an altercation outside a Langlees convenience store.

Colquhoun, now known as Derek Davidson, struck twice at the man with the weapon, leaving him with a four-inch cut across the back of his neck, a curved slash more than three inches long, running from his left ear to below his left eye, and a one-and-a-half-inch cut through his left ear itself.

The 37-year-old victim required 17 stitches in his face, as well as steri-strips and glue, and will be scarred for life.

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Davidson was sentenced at Falkirk Sheriff Court

Appearing from custody at Falkirk Sheriff Court via video link on Thursday, Davidson had pled guilty to the assault to severe injury and permanent disfigurement he committed at GKR Foodstore, Haugh Street, on April 21.

The court heard the late-afternoon incident happened after Davidson had initially tried to act as a peacemaker, trying to prevent his friend from being assaulted by a woman who “had an issue with him”.

Procurator fiscal Alex Kirk said: “Mr Davidson is seen on CCTV placing his hand in his pocket and then making a slashing motion towards the left hand side of the victim’s face.

“He steps back and Davidson makes a stabbing motion towards him.”

Simon Hutchison, defence solicitor, said the victim had become “very angry” during the encounter outside the shop, and had started spitting on both the woman and Davidson, who was trying to separate them.

Then the victim said he had COVID-19, causing Davidson to fly into a fury and wield the blade.

Mr Hutchison said: "For some reason, which Mr Davidson can't explain to himself, but probably as a result of drugs he had consumed, he saw red and acted in the manner described.

“He was a very gifted footballer and was a professional player until an accident in 2011 meant he couldn't continue. Unfortunately since he appears to have had significant issues with alcohol and illegal drugs.

“He is appalled at his behaviour. He's very good friends with the victim and remains so.”

A letter from father-of-two Davidson, now an unemployed construction worker, expressing his remorse was handed to the sheriff.

Sheriff Derek Hamilton jailed him for 32 months, and made him subject to a 12 month supervised release order, which he said was needed to protect the public from serious harm.

He said: “This was a significantly violent offence.”

He added that Davidson now had “a significant record” and this was his third conviction for an assault involving a knife.

Davidson was a product of Falkirk FC's youth programme and made his first team debut as a teenager in the and scored against Ross County in a first division match.

He later worked as a roofer, and a fall from a roof ended his playing career.