Man jailed for causing disturbance at Galashiels charity office

High Street in Galashiels.
High Street in Galashiels.

A man has been jailed for 114 days for causing a disturbance at the office of a Galashiels charity for people with alcohol and drug problems.

Frightened staff locked themselves in a side room as Scott Morrison issued threats and threw computer equipment onto the floor at Addaction in High Street in April.

The 31-year-old pleaded guilty at Selkirk Sheriff Court to behaving in a threatening or abusive manner and vandalism.

He admitted shouting and swearing, punching and kicking a door and uttering threats of violence towards a female employee.

Morrison, of Church Square, Galashiels, also admitted throwing the office’s computer equipment to the floor and damaging it.

Tessa Bradley, prosecuting, said Morrison had a long-standing history of drug abuse and was on a methadone programme.

She explained that her client had arrived at the office, a drop-in centre for people with drug problems, in the afternoon and staff there could tell he was under the influence of drugs.

He left the premises but then came back, appearing to be more lucid.

Ms Bradley continued: “He appeared to be under the influence of street drugs and was offered a cup of coffee to sober him up, but the staff member was concerned about his presentation and he was struggling to speak and falling into unconsciousness.

“She feared he had taken an overdose.”

Ms Bradley said ambulance staff were contacted, and Morrison was given a dose of Moloxin to try to bring him round.

He was given an injection in his left thigh and the medication worked as Morrison came round, but he then jumped to his feet and started shouting and swearing.

Morrison was kicking the door of the premises while shouting and swearing and was clearly very angry and aggressive, the court heard.

The fiscal said Morrison issued threats to one woman, saying she was dead.

She added: “The worker was concerned for her own welfare and her colleagues, and they locked the door to prevent him getting in.

“He was kicking and punching the door, and they contacted the police.”

Police officers arrived at about 3.40pm and found Morrison sitting on a sofa, still shouting and swearing.

Ms Bradley said that while they were waiting for other officers to arrive Morrison was shouting and swearing and told the female worker she was dead and that he knew where she lived.

She added: “It was clear to the attending officers that all the people present were visibly shaken and frightened.”

“He was taken to Dalkeith police station, where the usual procedures were followed.”

When cautioned and charged, Morrison replied: “I apologise because Addaction have been good to me.”

He later went on to claim that the staff were not being very helpful and he thought they were winding him up.

The cost of the damage Morrison caused to the office was estimated at £350.

In a letter read out to the court, Morrison said he was “extremely embarrassed and ashamed at his behaviour”, adding: “There is no excuse for my behaviour.

“I was well out of order because of the drugs.”