View Full Version : Trial takes dramatic turn

29-Jun-16, 08:33
Brother is victim in assaults says sister

A WOMAN claimed in court yesterday that her brother, accused of serious assaults on his former girlfriend, was in fact the victim.
Defence witness Pamela Lamont told how John Lamont would phone her in the middle of the night while he was being assaulted by Wendy McLeod.
She told the jury at Wick: "I could hear her screaming in the background and things being thrown."
Ms Lamont, 31, added that she felt helpless....she wanted to go to his aid at his then home in Leitch Court, Thurso, but couldn't leave the house as her young son was asleep upstairs.
John Lamont, 50, denies four charges on indictment, of assaulting Ms McLeod. These allege that he pushed her so hard that her head went through a plasterboard wall, pushed her onto a chair and punched her, forcibly removed her dressing gown and induced her to sit naked on the floor, put her head under water in a bathroom basin and strike her with an ironing board, all to her injury.
The accused also pleaded not guilty to assaulting 49-year-old Vera Graham at his house in Rose Street, Thurso, by seizing her by the throat and, on another occasion pushing her out of the front door, causing her to fall down a set of steps and hit her head on the ground. The offences in both sets of charges, are alleged to have occurred between April 1, 2008 and June 2011.
Ms Lamont described the frequent phone calls she received from her brother who was crying and went on: "He told me Wendy was hitting him. I heard her saying on one occasion -'I am going to kill you, Johnny'. My brother was being abused."
Ms Lamont said that John was particularly vulnerable at the time as he had undergone major surgery to have two cancer tumours removed from his brain. She often saw John with injuries, a black eye and scraches on his arms and around the area of his head where surgery had been carried out.
Ms Lamont continued: "I asked him about the injuries and he blamed Wendy".
Asked why her brother had not reported the incidents to the police, Ms Lamont, of Bayview Terrace, Thurso replied: "I think he was embarrassed by it".
She described his relationship with Ms Macleod as "a disaster" and added that she was "jealous, manipulative and possessive".
Ms Lamont was asked about the night Vera Graham arrived at her brother's house in Rose Street, Thurso, uninvited, after he had split up with her. Ms Graham previously told the court she had gone there to "lighten the accused's mood" following a difference over holiday cash.
Ms Lamont said she was 'shocked' when an intoxicated Ms Graham entered the living room where the witness and her boyfriend, Graham Low, were sitting and went on: "She had two bottles of wine and was wearing high heels and a trench coast. She opened it to reveal white lingerie. We were shocked and I think my brother was embarrassed. He had ended the relationship by then and kept telling Vera to leave. Things became awkward and we left."
However. Ms Lamont said that Ms Graham visited her the following day and said she had fallen down the steps outside the accused's house the previous night and split her head open but didn't blame him.
Asked by defence solicitor George Mathers why Lamont and Ms Graham had parted company, Ms Lamont said that her brother had felt "smothered" by her.
Ms Lamont explained: "Vera told John that she was in love with him a week into the relationship. I was frequently in John's house giving him support through his cancer difficulties and she was always there. I was never alone with him. I think she was trying to rekindle the relationship."
Ms Lamont rejected a suggestion that she might be accused of being biased because he was her brother.She said: "No, not at all. I was concerned for my brother in the hands of this woman."
Mr Mathers: You are aware that they have both Ms McLeod and Ms Graham have made allegations of assault against your brother."
Ms Lamont: "Yes, but I don't believe them for a moment."
The court was told previously that Lamont was now in a happy relationship with a woman to whom he proposed marriage..
Another defence witness Brian Kirk, 44, said there was "a rumpus" most weekends when Lamont used to visit Ms McLeod at her home next door in Harland Road, Castletown.
Mr Kirk, a neighbour, described the recurring weekend scenario involving Lamont coming out of the house into the garden followed by Ms McLeod who was "screaming and bawling" and would kick and punch him.
Mr Kirk said that Lamont never retaliated and would "back off and leave in his car."
Replying to fiscal depute Fraser Matheson, who suggested the witness was lying and "fabricating everything", Mr Kirk replied: "I have no reason to."
He added that the reason he didn't report the incidents to the police was because he didn't want to get involved.
A neighbour in Leitch Court, Thurso, Anne Eddows, said she once saw Lamont with a black eye and when she asked him how he had come by it, he told her Wendy had hit him.
The trial now in its sixth day is expected to conclude today with speeches from the prosecution and defence and the jury's verdict.