A prisoner who battered another inmate with his pal has claimed staff at the north-east jail thanked him.
Brett Lynch, 33, and Mathew Maltman, known as Whyte, 34, both pled guilty to different degrees of involvement in the attack on another inmate at HMP Grampian on Christmas Eve last year.
The assault, which involved both men kicking him in the head, left him with a permanent scar after he fell and hit his head on a table.
But as the hearing at Aberdeen Sheriff Court neared its conclusion yesterday, Lynch, who appeared via a video link from the jail, interrupted proceedings to claim that prison staff had thanked him and Whyte, for tackling their victim, who the court heard had a razor blade.
Lynch said: “The SPS (Scottish Prison Service) staff were thanking us because they didn’t have to pursue the man with the knife because of us.”
Sheriff Graeme Napier replied: “I was told it was a razor.”
Lynch said: “I don’t know what he had. I was trying to disarm the guy.
“The officers were thanking us that we went in and tackled him rather than themselves.”
Fiscal depute Colin Neilson told the court: “On the day in question both the accused and the complainer were prisoners at HMP Grampian and were all housed in the same wing of the prison.”
He said around 8.45am when staff commenced duties they “became aware of an altercation” between the complainer and Whyte, adding: “This appeared to result in injuries to Whyte.”
Mr Neilson said: “Shortly after, prison staff observed a fight start between the two accused and the complainer which quickly led to the complainer lying on the floor and Lynch was seen to repeatedly kick the complainer on the head and body having got the better of him.”
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The fiscal said the whole incident lasted 40 seconds, but Lynch “stopped his activity about half way through”. Whyte, who had also been involved from the start, continued his involvement.
Lynch admitted assaulting the man by struggling with him, repeatedly causing him to fall to the floor and repeatedly kicking him in the head and body.
And Whyte pled guilty to assault to severe injury and permanent disfigurement by struggling, causing him to fall, punching and kicking him in the head and body repeatedly and causing him to strike his head against a table.
Mr Neilson added the complainer tried to stand up and “fell backwards and hit his head on a table”. He was left with a “deep cut” approximately 2-3cm close to his hairline which had to be glued shut.
Defence agent Sam Milligan, representing Lynch, said there had earlier been a stand-off and the complainer had presented at Whyte’s cell and made “slashing motions towards the occupants”.
He said there was then a “further coming together” and Lynch had struck the man “to effectively knock him to the ground”, adding his client had also sustained an injury to his leg in the incident.
Mr Milligan said Lynch had been dealt with in prison through “the usual denial of privileges, exercise, etc”.
Solicitor David Sutherland, representing Whyte, said there had been earlier threats and exchanges prior to the incident.
He said: “My client, aware of the complainer having a razor blade, doesn’t back down because of that reality of prison life of not wanting to be seen to be backing down.
“He ought to have told the prison staff. That didn’t happen and my client is then slashed by the complainer resulting in injuries sustained to is chest and arm.
“They engage and my client acted in the way he has now pled guilty to.”
Sheriff Napier jailed both accused, whose addresses were given in court papers as HMP Grampian, Lynch for five months and Whyte for 15 months.
The Evening Express has contacted SPS for comment.