Gala day ended with shotgun stand-off

Livinsgton Sheriff Court, Livingston
Livinsgton Sheriff Court, Livingston

A jilted lover armed himself with a shotgun and went out looking for the man who stole his girlfriend.

Derek Hardie was “smarting from humiliation” 
after learning his ex had been cheating on him for months with his best friend Darren McCabe.

He confronted the new couple after drinking heavily at Bridgend gala day.

Hardie tried to persuade his former girlfriend to go back with him but she rejected him again and revealed her new boyfriend was in her house.

Hardie’s former pal McCabe agreed to come to the door to talk to him but was then assaulted by Hardie who struck him on the shoulder with a bottle.

Hardie (36), then made a bad situation much worse when he went to his uncle’s house to fetch a shotgun and told people he was gunning for his best mate.

Livingston Sheriff Court was told the shotgun wasn’t loaded and the father of two only wanted to “frighten and humiliate” his love rival.

But villagers scattered in terror when Mr McCabe stood up to Hardie as he ran towards him pointing the gun.

In the struggle which followed, Mr McCabe grabbed the shotgun by the barrel and managed to disarm Hardie, who then ran off.

Katrine Craig, prosecuting, said: “The complainer saw the accused and challenged him to shoot him. The accused told him the gun wasn’t loaded and he’d just wanted to scare him.”

Hardie appeared for sentencing after earlier pleading guilty to a firearms offence and two assaults.

He admitted having the shotgun in his possession at Auldhill Avenue and Auldhill Crescent, both Bridgend without being the holder of a shotgun certificate.

He also admitted striking Mr McCabe on the body with a bottle and assaulting him by brandishing a shotgun at him and struggling with him.

Johnny Brown, defending, said Hardie had been drinking with friends at Bridgend gala day when he heard his ex had been making a fool of him by cheating on him with his best friend.

He said: “This was a matter of great shock and emotional distress to Mr Hardie.”

But Sheriff Martin Edington said Hardie’s deliberate actions after the bottle assault could not be characterised as “a moment of madness”.

He said for the safety of the public only a custodial sentence was appropriate and sent Hardie to prison for a total of 14-and-a-half months.