A thug has been jailed after attacking a stranger with a shovel, causing him to hit his head on a kerb as he fell to the ground.
Lee Smith armed himself with a shovel and a lashed out after getting into a row with the man when he wouldn’t give him a cigarette.
Smith, 34, was left covered in blood and when he was stopped by police shortly after, claimed he’d acted in self-defence, even bragging: “I can handle myself.”
Fiscal depute Lynne MacVicar told Aberdeen Sheriff Court Smith’s victim had been socialising with a pal in an Aberdeen bar before leaving around 7pm on October 25, grabbing a takeaway and walking home along School Road.
Ms MacVicar said: “The last thing the complainer remembers is seeing two males in the street.
“The complainer and the accused got into an argument over an unknown matter.”
Ms MacVicar said as the man began to walk away, Smith picked up a stone from a nearby garden and threw it towards him, hitting his shopping bag and causing a liquid inside to spill.
The pair then continued to argue and grappled and struggled with each other.
Smith told cops ‘I can handle myself’
Ms MacVicar said: “The accused was in possession of a shovel and struck the complainer with this, making contact with his shoulder.
“This caused the complainer to lose his balance and fall to the ground while he and the accused continued to pull at each other.
“The complainer struck his head on the kerb when he fell to the ground.”
Police attended to find Smith walking down St Machar Drive “covered in blood”.
When ordered to stop, Smith replied that he’d acting in “self defence”, adding: “We had a square go and I can handle myself.”
He was arrested.
Smith’s victim was taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary where he was found to have a 7cm laceration to his scalp, which needed 14 sutures to close and a fractured shoulder bone.
Smith ‘armed himself with a spade’
Smith, of HMP Grampian, pled guilty to assault to severe injury and permanent disfigurement, as well as failing to comply with a curfew.
Defence agent Iain McGregor said his client and the man were “total strangers”, but got into a row after he refused to give Smith a cigarette.
He said Smith then made a derogatory comment and the man “lunged towards him and punched him to the face”.
The solicitor said matters then “deteriorated” and Smith “armed himself with a spade”.
He said it was of “particular regret” to Smith that the man had hit his head on the kerb.
Mr McGregor added: “At the time he was a user of heroin and valium and his recollection of events is somewhat hazy.”
Sheriff Morag McLaughlin jailed Smith for three years and also imposed a 12-month supervised release order.