Highlands & Islands

Man who slapped weeks old baby in Inverness flat jailed

A man who slapped an eight-week-old baby has been sentenced at Inverness Sheriff Court to 10 months in prison.

Michael Thomson, 21, of Bathgate, assaulted the infant at a flat in Inverness on 18 April.

He had been asked to look after the child by its mother who had been suffering from post natal depression and a lack of sleep, the court heard.

Fiscal depute Karen Smith said the woman confronted Thomson about a mark on the right side of the baby's face.

Thomson said he had stumbled when putting the girl to her to bed and she had hit her head.

Doctors who later examined the infant said the injury had been caused by a blow like a slap.

'Bad record'

Defence agent Willie Young told the court: "The baby's mother was suffering from post natal depression and he was often asked to do much of the caring because of her condition.

"Alcohol had been taken by him, he lost control and slapped the child.

"He appreciates how serious it is and is full of remorse and regret. He presents as being genuinely contrite."

Mr Young said his client moved away from Inverness following the incident.

Sentencing him, Sheriff Margaret Neilson told Thomson: "There is never an excuse for assaulting an eight-week-old baby.

"In view of the nature of the offence and your bad record, only a custodial sentence is appropriate here."

It was backdated to 31 July when he first was taken into custody.

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