In the Media

Woman jailed after being caught on CCTV driving with man stuck on car bonnet

PUBLISHED June 6, 2012

Suzanne Gilchrist carried 22-year-old Stuart Morris along on her Vauxhall Corsa after driving into him as she tried to escape from a shop security guard.

Sheriff Wyllie Robertson, told Gilchrist, 37, that CCTV footage of the incident, which was played in court, showed "vividly" how she had put Mr Morris's life in danger.

Emma White, prosecuting, said the incident began with the mother-of-one trying to get away from the security officer at the Howgate Shopping Centre in Falkirk in June 2011.

She drove away as the guard, Lorne Stevenson, tried to open her driver's door and snatch her keys from the ignition.

Mr Stevenson was trying to speak to her about an alleged theft from a branch of Boots.

Stirling Sheriff Court heard that as Gilchrist sped off, Mr Morris, a passer-by, happened to be crossing the road and was in her way.

Miss White said Gilchrist drove towards him and struck him, causing him jump onto the bonnet to avoid being hurt.

She then drove off "at speed" down Manor Street in the town and through a series of other short streets, weaving from side to side.

After police eventually arrived at the scene to arrest Gilchrist, Mr Morris who was "plainly overcome"by the incident, told officers he "thought he was a goner".

Gilchrist, of Boswall Parkway, Edinburgh, pleaded guilty to assaulting Mr Morris, failing to give way at junctions, and trying to throw him from her car to the danger of his life on June 12 last year.

Her plea of not guilty to stealing a bottle of aftershave was accepted.

Sheriff Robertson jailed Gilchrist for four years and three months.