Abusing two ex-colleagues in a Kelso supermarket resulted in a fine of £150 fine for a former factory worker.
Andrew Golightley, 44, pleaded guilty at Jedburgh Sheriff Court to behaving in a threatening or abusive manner in the Co-operative Store in the town’s Roxburgh Street on September 11.
Golightley, of Abbotsford Grove, Darnick, admitted shouting and swearing and making abusive remarks.
Tessa Bradley, prosecuting, explained that two women employed at the Plexus electronic products factory in Kelso were shopping in the store at the same time as the accused, formerly a cleaner there.
The depute fiscal said: “It appears that some ill feeling arising from that is behind this incident.”
She said that Golightley pointed to a Plexus logo on one of the women’s jackets and shouted ‘cross-contamination’, then proceeded to make abusive comments to her.
The woman’s colleague noticed what was going on and confronted the accused, telling him to stop it.
Ms Bradley said that Golightley then went through the checkouts but again became abusive towards the woman.
That prompted the woman to shout for help from shop staff and her colleague, and the police were called.
Defence lawyer Ed Hulme said his client had been doing agency work to make ends meet.
He added: “The background to this is that he used to live in Kelso for a number of months, but he experienced a lot of difficulty because of a false rumour which was going round about him in the town and at his workplace.
“At the time of the incident, he was still adjusting to his medication.
“He saw someone from the Plexus workplace he believed was responsible for spreading the rumour and the red mist came down.
“He made the unpleasant remarks, and he moved out of Kelso that week.
“It was out of character for him.”
Sheriff Peter Paterson said he acknowledged the damage that false rumours can do and the effect they can have but added: “That does not justify your conduct, but I am prepared to place it in that context and for that reason will impose a fine of £150.”