A shoplifter caught with bottles of alcohol told supermarket security staff he hoped they got Covid-19 after spitting on them, a court has heard.
James Davidson was stopped as he tried to leave Morrisons on King Street on March 21 last year.
The 31-year-old was taken away to be searched he spat at and racially abused security guards who found five bottles in his bag.
Davidson, who appeared at Aberdeen Sheriff Court via video-link, admitted stealing alcohol, assaulting the security guards by spitting at them, acting in a racially aggravated manner and being in possession of a controlled drug.
Fiscal depute Katy Begg told the court a customer spotted Davidson slipping a bottle into his bag before security intervened.
She said: “At 4pm on Saturday March 21 a security guard was advised by a customer that the accused had concealed a bottle of alcohol in a carrier bag without paying for it.
“While the security guard searched for him two other security guards saw the accused as he attempted to leave the locus.
“They stopped him and advised him that they intended to search his bag. The accused took exception to this and they took to a side room.
“Whilst in the side room the accused became irate which resulted in the security guards having to restrain him. On doing so, the accused spat at the security guards and said ‘I hope you contract coronavirus.’
“The security staff checked the bag and found it was foil-lined and had five bottles of alcohol within, worth £123. They all had security tags on them and the accused was unable to provide a receipt for them.
“Having checked the bag and the accused appearing to have calmed down the security guards stopping restraining him and accused got back to his feet.
“However he then began to racially abuse the security staff while making monkey noises and gestures. The complainers were distressed by the accused’s behaviour towards them. As a result, the police were contacted.
“While waiting for the police the accused produced a brown substance and ingested it in front of the complainers. On arrival, the police officers saw multiple wraps containing brown powder to the accused. The substance was later forensically examined and found to contain 0.04g of diamorphine.
“The accused was cautioned, arrested and charged and he was taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary as a result of having consumed diamorphine.”
Defence agent Jennifer Pritchard said: “He has a background in drug abuse. He came from a broken home and his drug escalated and he was using heroin from the age of 13.
“There are some gaps in his offending and this is due to him being off drugs.”
Sheriff Philip Mann jailed Davidson, of Fraser Court, Aberdeen, for 12 months.