View Full Version : No jail - last chance

02-Apr-15, 14:32
Sheriff's surprise sentence to double breach accused -"You are not going directly to jail"

A WICK sheriff sprang a surprise on his court today by giving a woman, convinced she was jail-bound, a second chance to toe the line.
Allowing Carol Cowie to continue her unpaid work in the community, sympathetic Sheriff Andrew Berry said: "Everyone in this room will doubtless be wondering what I am playing at."
Cowie, 46,escaped a prison sentence, previously, after breaching her 150 hours work requirement by subjecting social workers to a tirade of abuse, so extreme that the sheriff confessed he would be "too embarrassed" to quote it.
The accused was back in court 10 days ago, to admit the second breach which prompted Sheriff Berry to exclaim yesterday -"What on earth am I going to do with you!"
Earlier, Cowie's solicitor, Diane McFarlane, told the sheriff, at Wick: "She accepts that a jail sentence is almost inevitable given her lack of co-operation".
Referring to a background report before the court, she went on: "The social work department is sympathetic towards her, but at the end of the day, the question remains that she is not in a position to comply with the order. She realises that the second breach of it, will automatically guarantee her a custodial sentence."
The solicitor added that Cowie intended to use her time in prison to plan changes in her life and address her drink problem. She realised matters were "out of control", on her release, would not return to Wick where she gets involved with the wrong company.
Sheriff Berry told Cowie: I feel duty bound to allow you a further opportunity to continue with the order, probably against my better judgement. Everyone in this room will wonder what I am playing at. It may put the social workers, who are going to have to try to work with you, again, into a state of anxiety over the weekend, but it seems to me, it is worthwhile. The effort, however, has to come from you."
The situation will be reviewed in four weeks time but the sheriff warned that if Cowie, of 107 Henrietta Street, Wick, failed to comply "in every way" with her community work, she would face a jail term."