Horrific knife attack in Dunipace home
A former soldier who slit his girlfriend’s throat because she was “nipping his head” was warned he could face a life sentence.
Robert Moffat attacked his girlfriend at his home in Dunipace, leaving her seriously injured with a horrific neck wound.
Moffat (56) was out on licence after being freed early from a previous jail sentence for another serious assault when he tried to murder Annelouise Gallacher on May 31 last year.
A judge told Moffat at the High Court in Edinburgh: “You have a record of previous convictions, but this is undoubtedly the most serious to date.”
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Lord Tyre told jurors: “It was a very serious case and in some ways a rather distressing one.”
The judge said as he discharged them following their verdict: “I wish you the best of health in the near future.”
Moffat had denied attempting to murder Ms Gallacher by assaulting her to her severe injury, permanent disfigurement and impairment and to the danger of her life at a house in Milton Row, Dunipace, by striking her on the neck with a knife.
However, he was found guilty of the crime.
He also inflicted further injuries to the woman’s head and body by means unknown to the prosecutor.
The court heard that after the attack Moffat claimed the victim had a knife but he was trained in unarmed combat and went to disarm her.
But he later told a relative: “I have done something wrong.”
He was arrested in the early hours of June 1 and gave a “no comment” interview to police.
But after procedures were finished he asked about the victim and when he was told of her condition he appeared “quite upset”.
He told police that he had been in a relationship with the 31-year-old for about eight to nine weeks on and off and she was staying with him.
He said he suffered from post traumatic stress disorder from being in the Army.
A detective told the court that she had noted him as saying that the incident happened because “she was nipping his head”.
He said that after it he got a towel and put it on her neck and called a friend. he changed his clothes and left the house and phoned an ambulance.
He was later detained by police in Falkirk and had fallen asleep after getting fuel for his car and parking up. He said if he had not been asleep he would have tried to make a run for it.
The victim suffered a badly broken nose and fractured cheekbone, as well as the life-threatening throat wound that left her windpipe visible.
HGV driver Moffat said he had moved to Stirlingshire from Perth and claimed that he was easy to get on with.
He claimed that when he went into the living room his victim was standing with a knife and he grabbed her.
He said she went to the floor and he fell on top of her. He told the court: “I sort of believe she has done it to herself.”
He told his defence counsel Matt Jackson QC that he had not deliberately harmed the victim with the knife.
The Crown has made an application for the court to consider the imposition of an Order for Lifelong Restriction (OLR) on Moffat.
Under an OLR the court fixes a minimum term the offender must serve but under the indeterminate sentence he is only freed if parole authorities are satisfied he no longer poses a danger to the public.
Lord Tyre adjourned sentence on Moffat for the preparation of a background report. He was remanded in custody.