Carer used clients’ cash to get Sky TV

Selkirk Sheriff Court, Justice of the Peace, Procurator Fiscal
Selkirk Sheriff Court, Justice of the Peace, Procurator Fiscal

A carer has been hit with a bill of more than £1,000 at Selkirk Sheriff Court for using the bank account of her elderly employers to obtain services for herself.

Carly March, 31, of Cheviot Road, Hawick, pleaded guilty to pretending to Sky Digital and Kwik-Fit Insurance that she had permission of the owner to use the account to obtain the services.

The fraud offences happened at a house in Denholm during the course of her employment between February 1 and September 1 last year.

The value of the services she received was £684.

Tessa Bradley, prosecuting, said March was in a position of trust and had been looking after a paraplegic and his wife, who has heart difficulties, so they were both dependent on a carer.

Ms Bradley explained that March was paid by cheque and she used her clients’ bank account details to set up standing orders to buy Sky TV for £59 a month and insurance at £82 a month.

Her crime came to light when the wife got a mini-statement and queried why she was paying for Sky TV.

Defence lawyer Mark Harrower said the offence happened at a difficult time for March as her partner was not working and spent much of the time at home watching Sky TV.

He said: “She was able to do this with the details from the cheque. It was far simpler than it should have been.

“When it came to light, she was suspended and dismissed, and she won’t get another job in the caring sector.

“She is very regretful about all this.”

He added that March was now holding down three jobs and would be able to pay a fine and compensation.

Sheriff Donald Ferguson said: “This is a serious matter – a breach of trust.”

He fined March £400 and made a compensation order of £684 in favour of the couple she had defrauded.

EMBEZZLER AWAITS HIS FATE

A Birgham man has been found guilty of embezzlement following a trial at Selkirk Sheriff Court.

Robin Anderson, 59, had denied embezzling £2,168 while employed as office manager at Elliot Henderson and Sons in Selkirk. That cash related to wages that Anderson was paid. The offence was committed between October 2015 and July 2016.

Sentence was deferred until next month for background reports.

CANNABIS OFFENDER

An Innerleithen man found with almost £500 worth of cannabis has been ordered to carry out 170 hours of unpaid work at Selkirk Sheriff Court.

Scott Ainslie, 22, was found to have 63 grammes of the class-B drug at his home in Morningside earlier this year.

The house was searched after a warrant was executed, but Ainslie insisted all the drugs found were for his own personal use.

Prosecutor Tessa Bradley said he did supply family and friends to fund his own habit, however.

Defence lawyer Ed Hulme said: “He has a long history of cannabis use since the age of 14.”

Sheriff Donald Ferguson commented: “You have gone down a slippery slope by getting involved in the commercial side of things.

“Selling cannabis is a serious matter. People go to prison for selling drugs.”

In addition to the unpaid work order, the sheriff imposed nine months’ supervision with a drugs-counselling requirement.

CASE CONTINUED WITHOUT PLEA

Melanie Berkley, 44, of Muthag Street, Selkirk, has been accused at the town’s sheriff court of committing five offences.

She is charged with brandishing a bottle and breaking her own car window in Crumhaugh Road, Hawick, on July 21.

Berkley also faces allegations of breaking the rear window of another car, driving while unfit through drink or drugs, failing to stop after an accident and failing to report to police within 24 hours after an accident.

The case was continued without plea until November 6.

REPORTS ORDERED

Background reports have been ordered on a 40-year-old man after he pleaded guilty to four offences at Selkirk Sheriff Court.

Jamie Dewar admitted having a knife without a reasonable excuse in Scott Street, Galashiels, on July 25.

He also admitted smashing a window, assaulting his ex-partner and shouting and swearing and uttering threats.

Dewar, of Albert Place, Wallyford, will be sentenced on November 6.

MAN FACES THEFT ALLEGATIONS

Edward Hannah, 42, of King Street, Galashiels, is accused of stealing a key for a house in Kenilworth Avenue, Galashiels, between January and June, and then breaking in and stealing a bank card.

He is then alleged to have used the card on various dates during the course of June at Tweedbank Late Shop, the Tweed Road store and the Adam Purves Garage, both in Galashiels.

The case was continued without plea at Selkirk Sheriff Court until November 6.

CHARGED WITH STEALING SOFA

Two 21-year-old men have been accused of stealing a sofa from the Glen Café at St Mary’s Loch and then recklessly destroying it by setting it on fire.

Kieran Park, of Gorton Place, and Connor Robertson, of Rosedale Neuk, both in Rosewell, deny the offence, said to have happened on July 30. A trial has been scheduled for Selkirk Sheriff Court on November 9.

YOUTH DENIES SEXUAL ASSAULT

A Foutainhall teenager will stand trial on a charge of sexually assaulting a female in a static caravan on a Borders farm.

Alasdair Saunders, 19, of Fleming Place, denies the offence, alleged to have happened on October 9 last year near Stow.

A trial date has been set for October 23 at Selkirk Sheriff Court.

MAN FOUND WITH DRUG IN TOILETS

Being found in possession of heroin at the public toilets in St Boswells cost a 32-year-old man a fine of £450.

Marcus Cree, of High Street, Jedburgh, was spotted by a member of the public acting suspiciously near the bus stop on July 12.

Selkirk Sheriff Court heard he was found in possession of four wraps of the class-A drug.

MAN ACCUSED OF CAR THEFT BIDS

A 29-year-old man has been accused of attempting to steal cars in Galashiels.

Mark Turnbull denied a charge of trying the door handles of vehicles in Halliburton Place on August 23 and attempting to steal them and also property within.

He also pleaded not guilty to struggling violently with two police constables.

A trial date was fixed for November 11 for Turnbull, of Berrymoss Court, Kelso, with an intermediate hearing on October 23.

OAP ACCUSED OF BENEFITS FIDDLE

A Peebles pensioner has been accused of receiving more than £27,000 in benefits she was not entitled to.

Caroline Johnston, 66, of Biggiesknowe, is charged with receiving £24,584 without declaring an annuity.

That offence is said to have happened between September 2009 and September 2015.

She also denies receiving council tax benefit of £2,447 over a four-year period.

A trial date has been fixed for November 9 at Selkirk Sheriff Court.

CARELESS DRIVING TRIAL

Bruce Gardner, 20, giving the George and Abbotsford Hotel, in High Street, Melrose, as his address, denies careless driving on an unclassified road near Langshaw on January 27 and colliding with a stationary car .

A trial will take place at Selkirk Sheriff Court on October 26.

INNERLEITHEN MAN RELEASED

An Innerleithen man appeared from custody at Jedburgh Sheriff Court accused of making abusive homophobic comments.

Alan Keddie, 44, of Buccleuch Street, denies a charge of threatening or abusive behaviour aggravated by a sexual prejudice.

The offence is alleged to have been committed at a field at the end of Princes Street, Innerleithen, last Wednesday.

A trial date was set for December 21 at Selkirk Sheriff Court, with an intermediate hearing on November 20.

He was bailed with special conditions to stay away from a property in Morningside, Innerleithen, and three named women.

MAN BREACHED HIS BAIL ORDER

A Galashiels man breached a court order by entering a retail park.

Michael Dodds appeared from custody at Jedburgh Sheriff Court and pleaded guilty to being in TK Maxx, at Low Buckholmside, Galashiels, on Wednesday afternoon.

Procurator fiscal Graham Fraser said the 36-year-old appeared to be intoxicated by an unknown substance, arousing concern about his behaviour, and he was recognised by a staff member he went to school with.

It was discovered that he was currently on bail with a condition not to enter the retail park.

Defence lawyer Ed Hulme said his client was actually banned from two retail parks in Galashiels by the bail order and did not realise he was not allowed to enter the Low Buckholmside one.

Sentence was deferred on Dodds until December 5, when he has another matter calling.

He is currently on a night-time curfew keeping him in his Hawthorn Road home between 8pm and 5.30am.

STRUGGLED WITH POLICE OFFICERS

A Hawick man involved in a violent struggle with police officers has been jailed for 72 days at Jedburgh Sheriff Court.

John Maxwell, 49, pleaded guilty to behaving in a threatening or abusive manner at his former home in Weensland Road on July 26.

Police had been called out to a disturbance at the house, and Maxwell reacted by shouting and swearing, and struggling violently with the officers.

Not-guilty pleas to assaulting two named women at the Weensland Road house on July 24 and July 26 were accepted by the crown.

GALA MAN FACES ASSAULT TRIAL

A Galashiels man appeared from custody at Jedburgh Sheriff Court and denied injuring a man by assaulting him.

Raymond McCallum, 49, is alleged to have struck Richard Cleghorn to the body with an unknown sharp object and struggled violently with him.

The offence is alleged to have been committed in the Aster Court area of Langlee on August 31.

McCallum, of Winston Place, will stand trial on December 21, with an intermediate hearing on November 20.

He was released on bail with special conditions that he does not approach or contact four named people or enter Beech Avenue, Galashiels.

INTERCHANGE OFFENDER

A teenager convicted of causing a disturbance at Galashiels transport interchange has had sentence deferred at Selkirk Sheriff Court for background reports.

Connor Beattie, 18, formerly of Ballantyne Street, Innerleithen, and now living in homeless accommodation in Hawick, pleaded guilty to committing two offences on Friday, May 26.

He behaved in a threatening or abusive manner by shouting and swearing, challenged others to fight and used abusive and sexually-offensive remarks, as well as struggling violently with five police officers.

The court heard how the first offender turned up at the interchange around 5pm “extremely intoxicated”.

Beattie was challenging other members of the public to fight and made a crude comment to a 15-year-old girl.

Tessa Bradley, prosecuting, said: “He claimed he had been stabbed, but what had happened was he had fallen into a bush and scratched his back.”

The prosecutor said he made another rude comment to another female and then began shouting and swearing at police before ending up in a violent struggle with five officers.

Defence lawyer Ross Dow said his client had a drink problem at the time.

Sentence was deferred until November 6.

MAN, 55, DENIES KNIFE CHARGE

A man has been accused of brandishing a knife during an incident outside his home on August 23.

Kelvin Clark, of Scott Road, Lauder, is charged with behaving in a threatening or abusive manner, shouting and swearing, brandishing the knife and threatening others.

He is also accused of possession of a knife.

The 55-year-old pleaded not guilty to both charges, and he was released on bail to stand trial at Selkirk Sheriff Court on November 11.

DRINK-DRIVING TRIAL DATE FIXED

Ionut Braescu will stand trial at Selkirk Sheriff Court on November 7 on three motoring charges.

The 28-year-old denies drink-driving near his home in Bridgegate Court, Peebles, on July 7, as well as having no insurance or valid licence.

SEXUAL ACTIVITY ALLEGATION

A Hawick man has been accused of engaging in sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl.

David Adamson, 29, denies the offence, said to have happened on various occasions between January 1, 2015, and April 15, 2015, at two houses in Selkirk.

He also pleaded not guilty to a charge of intentionally sending a sexual written communication to her.

The case will recall at Selkirk Sheriff Court on October 23.

WOMAN DENIES TELEVISION THEFT

A woman has been accused of breaking into a neighbour’s flat and stealing a television set.

Donna Marie Baxter, 44, formerly of Talisman Avenue in Galashiels, denies the offence, said to have happened on September 19 last year.

A trial date has been set at Selkirk Sheriff Court of November 7 for Baxter, now of Maxmill Park in Kelso.

WOMAN ACCUSED OF FIRE THREAT

A woman has been accused of threatening to burn down the Borders General Hospital.

Nikitta James, 29, of Branxholme Road, Hawick, is also said to have repeatedly struck the walls of a cubicle and behaved in an aggressive manner on various occasions at the Melrose hospital on August 31.

A trial date has been set for January 16 at Selkirk Sheriff Court, with an intermediate hearing on December 18.

MAN PUNCHED VICTIM TO HEAD

Michael Graham, 23, of Kingsmeadows Road, Peebles, has admitted assaulting a male by punching him to his head to his injury.

The offence was committed in Eastgate, Peebles, on June 25.

Sentence was deferred at Selkirk Sheriff Court until November 6 for the production of background reports.

DANGEROUS DRIVING TRIAL

A lorry driver faces a charge of dangerous driving on the A7 between Galashiels and Stow.

David Harvey, 47, of Mary Longley Way, Penrith, denies overtaking vehicles when it was unsafe to do so and forcing other motorists to take evasive action. The offence is said to have happened on June 27.

A trial is due to take place at Selkirk Sheriff Court on December 21, with an intermediate hearing on November 20.

MOTORIST WILL STAND TRIAL

A motorist has been accused of culpable and reckless conduct by leaving a car abandoned on the A68 road after it had been involved in an accident.

Cameron McNeill, 27, of Loan View, Lauder, is alleged to have put other road users in danger as the vehicle was left in the middle of the road near a series of bends, there was no road lighting and he did not alert the emergency services.

He also denies careless driving and colliding with a tree on May 14 and not reporting an accident to police.

His trial is fixed for November 7 at Selkirk Sheriff Court.

48-YEAR-OLD DENIES ABUSE

George Noble, 48, will stand trial at Selkirk Sheriff Court on November 9 on a charge of behaving in a threatening or abusive manner at his Lintburn Place home, Galashiels, on July 24.

WOMAN DENIES DRUG-DEALING

A Galashiels woman is to face trial at Selkirk Sheriff Court on a drug-dealing charge.

Tasha White, 25, of Torwoodlee Road, denies being concerned in the supply of cannabis.

White is also charged with being in possession of diazepam in Torwoodlee Road.

Her trial date has been set for November 23.

UNDER-AGE SEX ALLEGATIONS

A teenager has been accused of having sexual intercourse with three under-age girls.

The 17-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is charged with the offences, said to have taken place in December, February and March at houses in Selkirk and Galashiels.

He faces a fourth allegation of breaching a court order by having unsupervised contact with a 15-year-old girl between March 14 and April 24.

The accused pleaded not guilty and a trial date was set for December 21 at Selkirk Sheriff Court.