HMA v DAVID HAY

At the High Court in Glasgow Lady Scott sentenced David Hay to life imprisonment after he was found guilty of the murder of Kenneth Dick in Fife on 11 February 2009. The punishment part was fixed at 16 years.

On sentencing Lady Scott made the following statement in court:

“You have been convicted of the murder, on 11th February 2009, of Mr Kenneth Dick. Previously you had been convicted by another jury of the attempted murder of Mr Dick and sentenced to 10 years and 3 months imprisonment.

The sentence for murder is fixed by law and is imprisonment for life. However, I also have to impose a period which must pass before you can apply for parole, known as the punishment part of that sentence. When that period has passed your release from prison will be a matter for the Parole Board. Even after release you will be on licence and subject to recall to prison for the rest of your life.

This was an inexplicable offence. After an evening’s drinking and without reason you suddenly turned on your victim and struck him using the heavy end of a pool cue with a forceful blow to the head. You did this when your victim had no warning and was unable to defend himself.

That blow caused a traumatic head injury rendering Mr Dick unconscious, immobile and unresponsive. He never recovered. For a period of over two years his family had to endure visiting the man they knew and loved incapacitated and suffering from repeated fits and seizures, until eventually on 4 November 2010 he died. His wife, daughters and young son have all been left devastated.

You have a criminal record which includes a conviction of causing death by dangerous driving. You are responsible therefore for taking the lives of 2 people. This makes this offence all the more serious.  The background report sets out the obvious, that you have little regard for others and you present a significant risk to the community.

The only mitigation is the fact that this assault consisted of only one blow and I have taken this into account.

Having regard to all these circumstances I sentence you to life imprisonment with a punishment part of 16 years imprisonment backdated to 16th February 2009.”