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McCOIST SON AVOIDS PRISON OVER CRASH; Court told shattered victim was left with a fractured skull.

Byline: RORY CASSIDY

THE son of Rangers legend Ally McCoist was blasted by a judge yesterday for leaving a man with a fractured skull and a bleed on the brain after mowing him down at high speed in his sports car.

Argyll McCoist, 20, raced through a red light and struck Stephan Murdoch, 21, on a pedestrian crossing while it was at a green man.

Scottish Sheriff Colin Pettigrew branded him "reckless" and "immature" for mowing down Stephan, then driving off in his uninsured PS20,000 Audi 1 S Line TDI. But he said he couldn't jail him because Parliament in Scotland forbids it as sentencing guidelines say criminals under the age of 21 should only be jailed if there is no viable alternative sentence available.

Last month McCoist, of Houston, Renfrewshire, admitted driving without insurance and causing serious injury to Stephan by driving dangerously.

Paisley Sheriff Court heard Stephan was taken to hospital after being hit by McCoist in Bishopton, Renfrewshire, on December 3, 2016.

Stephan spent a week in hospital, six months on crutches, had to quit his job as he could not stand for long periods and still feels pain in his leg 21 months later. He now also has memory and eyesight problems and bears the emotional scars of the incident, rarely leaving the house and panicking when crossing the road.

McCoist sobbed in the dock as procurator fiscal depute Pamela Brady said Stephan was struck at 9.30pm on the pedestrian crossing.

The prosecutor added: "He (Stephen) advises he does not go out as much as he used to. He becomes particularly anxious when he has to cross a road.

"He has also developed problems with sleep and becomes sick and nauseous when he lies down - this results in him becoming agitated.

"He has had to attend his GP regarding issues with sleep, anxiety, depression and pain."

The court heard that, despite his injuries, Stephan had completed a 10k race to prove to himself he could do it but that he'd had to walk most of the way.

When McCoist returned to the dock yesterday for sentencing, defence QC John Scullion said he was remorseful over his actions, was willing to carry out unpaid work in the community as an alternative to prison, could pay compensation to Stephan at the rate of PS100 a month and was from "a supportive family".

You are remorseful, regretting Sheriff Pettigrew said: "You failed to maintain proper observations and failed to comply with a red signal. You struck Mr Murdoch as he was crossing the road in the manner your driving compliance with the pedestrian traffic light system. "As a consequence of being struck, Mr Murdoch sustained severe injuries.

"You drove above the speed limit, failed to obey a red traffic signal, and failed to have proper regard to a pedestrian. You accept full responsibility for your actions.

"You are genuinely remorseful, bitterly regretting the manner of your driving which, while neither planned nor premeditated, was undoubtedly reckless and immature.

"Your application for a visa to take up a scholarship at college in the USA has been refused on account of these proceedings still pending."

He put McCoist on a community order, telling him to do 280 hours' work in the next 10 months. He also placed him on a restriction of liberty order, which will see him tagged and under curfew from 8pm to 5.30am every day for the next six months.

He also banned McCoist from driving for 42 months, reduced from 48 months as he admitted his guilt, and warned him he could still be jailed if he breaches the orders.

McCoist's dad was in court to support his son. The record Rangers goalscorer also accompanied him to court last year when he was again up on a charge of driving without insurance and was admonished at Paisley's Justice of the Peace Court.

Stephan declined to comment.

irish@mgn.co.uk

"You are remorseful, regretting the manner of your driving JUDGE PETTIGREW

CAPTION(S):

MOWN DOWN Stephan Murdoch spent a week in hospital and had to give up his job

SHAMED Argyll with his dad Ally McCoist. Picture: Stewart Robertson
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Sep 4, 2018
Words:695
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