Sheriff warns: Do the hours or miss Christmas

Sheriff Craig Caldwell
Sheriff Craig Caldwell

Offenders usually get short shrift from Sheriff Craig Caldwell when they do not engage with their community punishments.

A number of culprits appeared at Falkirk Sheriff Court last Thursday to find no sympathy from the man himself when it came to not completing sufficient hours of their community payback orders.

Thomas Campbell (21), 22 Bridgend Road, Avonbridge, pled guilty to placing his ex-partner in a state of fear back on July 13, 2014.

Sheriff Caldwell said: “Your engagement with the order is not satisfactory. I’m not at all impressed by your attitude – this is your last chance.”

He told Campbell he would have been given a jail sentence for not doing his hours if it not been for the fact he was in full-time employment.

Sentence was deferred with Campbell ordered to complete 28 hours within four weeks.

“Twenty-seven will not be enough,” said Sheriff Caldwell. “It’s 28 or jail, is that clear?”

Alison Meek (28) admitted giving false details and wasting police time, claiming she was the victim of an assault and robbery on February 27.

The court heard Meek, 10 Broadside Place, Denny, had managed to complete 20 hours in ten days despite suffering from anxiety and stress.

Sheriff Caldwell said: “You don’t seem to be interested in engaging in this order – I wonder if there is merit to it being continued? You are very much at risk of going to custody, you need to be getting out there and doing this work.

“You are going to be back here in four weeks time and you are going to have done an absolute minimum of 42 hours. If you haven’t done 42 hours you will be spending Christmas in jail.”

Michael Muldoon (26), 32 St John’s Avenue, Falkirk, pled guilty to behaving in a threatening manner towards his former partner in Victoria Road, Falkirk between August 14 and 15, saying he was going to damage her property.

The court heard Muldoon had taken two weeks off his work in order to make inroads into his outstanding unpaid work hours.

Sheriff Caldwell made him subject to a new community payback order with the condition he complete 90 hours unpaid work within three months.