Moray man escapes jail after series of offences

A Moray man who had committed a series of crimes while battling personal drug issues escaped a jail sentence when he appeared at Elgin Sheriff Court on Thursday.

Alexander McPhee, who has lived at addresses in Buckie and Forres, talked his way into the home of a neighbour at Hendry Terrace in Buckie on November 18 last year where he stole £190.

A month later he and his partner got into an argument that resulted with his verbally abusing her before slapping her in the face. Then on April 4 he stole an iPhone valued at £600 from a woman at the White Horse Inn in Elgin.

McPhee’s solicitor said that his 31-year-old client was “far too old” to offer his “chaotic lifestyle” as an excuse for his offences.

Sheriff James Hendry said that it would be easy to give periods of imprisonment to McPhee that would be deserving because of his behaviour. He added that to do so would lead to his being released in three or four months back into the environment that caused his problems in the first place.

Sheriff Hendry gave McPhee 18 months to complete 200 hours of unpaid work.