A MAN high on valium knocked on the door of a Borders property during the early hours of the morning and, while brandishing a hammer, demanded the householder hand over car keys, Jedburgh Sheriff Court has been told.

Hours earlier David Scougall, 22, had threatened two 15-year-old girls with a bottle after persistently asking them for drugs in the Co-op supermarket in High Street, Coldstream, on March 4.

Scougall was jailed for a total of 19 months after also admitting another offence of assaulting a former partner in Galashiels, last September.

Depute fiscal Miriam Clark said unemployed Scougall had an extensive list of previous convictions.

She explained that at around 12.45 hours on March 4 two girls aged 15 entered the Co-op but soon became aware of the accused moving around the aisles and then approaching them to ask if they had any drugs.

Ms Clark continued: "They moved away from him but he approached them again asking if they had any weed and he was carrying a bottle of Buckfast at the time.

"A member of staff witnessed this but the accused still managed to approach one of them again saying "if you don't give me anything I will batter you" before departing.

Ms Clark then went on to to describe the events of the attempted robbery at a house in Coldstream shortly after 1am the following day.

She said: "The householders had gone to bed but were woken at 1.10am by knocking at their front door.

"They thought it might have been a neighbour because there had been flooding in the area.

"The male householder answered the door and saw the accused with his hood up and was wearing a face mask. He was asking if he could have the keys for the Toyoya parked in the driveway.

"The accused was advised that he would not be handing over the keys and the accused then said he had a hammer."

The fiscal said the front door was shut with Scougall still demanding the keys.

During the confrontation, as Scougall tried to grab the keys, his shoe came off. He said if he got his shoe back he would go away.

After getting his shoe back he then left.
The householder inspected his car and found the door lying open and inner lights on and found a wallet which had Scougall's licence in it.

Later that day at around 1.30pm. one of the mothers of the 15-year-old girls went to the Cashline machine in Coldstream and passed Scougall who threatened her and said: "What are you looking at?”

The woman was alarmed and contacted the police.

Ms Clark then went on to give details of a domestic assault which happened in Gala Park, Galashiels, six months earlier in the afternoon of September 9.

Scougall admitted punching his partner causing her to fall to the ground.

This was witnessed by a local resident who restrained Scougall and saw the woman had blood on her face and hands.

The fiscal said: "The accused then ran away but he was apprehended by the police who took him into the van where it became apparent he was under the influence of something and he was taken to Borders General Hospital.”

Scougall's lawyer said her client had little recollection of the incidents on March 4/5 due to the valium he had taken.

She said that while the attempted robbery would have been particularly distressed for the householders, it was not a "sophisticated attack" and it was unlikely he would have ever received the keys, adding: "It was an odd thing to do."

Sheriff Peter Paterson said the events of March 4/5 he could deal with as "one course of conduct" for which he would have imposed a prison sentence of 18 months, but he reduced it to 12 months because of the guilty plea.

The sheriff added another seven months to run consecutively for Scougall’s "cowardly attack" on his ex-partner.