HMA v Edmond Reid

At the High Court in Edinburgh today, 19 May 2017, Lord Woolman sentenced Edmond Reid to an extended sentence of nine years’ imprisonment after the accused was found guilty of assault to severe injury and to the danger of life. The custodial term will be five years, followed by an extension period of four years on licence.

On sentencing, Lord Woolman made the following statement in court: 

“Edmond Reid, the event that brings you before this court took place on 30 July 2016. That night Nicholas Reid and his partner Karen Salmond attended a fundraising event at the Robin’s Nest pub in Edinburgh. 

At the end of a happy evening, the couple left the pub. Only a minute or so later, Nicholas Reid was lying on the ground with a serious head injury. 

You had struck him with a heavy blow to the face. He fell to the ground. Ms Salmon said there was blood all over him. You then walked away. 

I should emphasise that although you and the victim share the same surname, you are not related. You had never met one another before you delivered the blow. 

At the trial last month the jury did not accept that you acted in self-defence. They convicted you of assault to severe injury and to the danger of Mr Reid’s life. 

In his victim impact statement, he says that the crime ‘has had a very traumatic and distressful impact’ on his life and that of his loved ones. 

He had a bleed on his brain and was off work for four months. He has long-standing medical problems arising out of the attack for which he is still receiving treatment. 

I have considered the criminal justice social work report and everything said on your behalf. 

You are now 30. Your criminal record stretches back to 2003. Although most of your convictions relate to road traffic offences and theft, you have convictions for violence. 

Most notably in 2007 you were sentenced to three years’ imprisonment for assault at Edinburgh High Court. That is not your only High Court conviction. In 2013 you were sentenced to another term of three years’ imprisonment for a drugs offence. 

In arriving at my decision in this case, I mainly have regard to the seriousness of the crime. By a random act of violence, you changed the course of a stranger’s life. 

The proper course is to impose an extended sentence, so that the public has a measure of protection on your eventual release. 

I shall impose a total sentence of nine years’ imprisonment, of which five years will be the custodial element and four years the extension period. 

I backdate the sentence to 14 October 2016.”