Edinburgh crime: Painter aggressive towards woman he met on a dating app made to pay fine
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Editor’s note: Our report originally said that Stuart Grant "hooked up" with Lowri Astley. We wish to make clear that it was a meeting but that there was no sexual contact whatsoever.
An Edinburgh painter who acted aggressively towards a woman after meeting her on a dating app has been ordered to pay compensation to her.
Stuart Grant, 42, met up with Lowri Astley while she was on a short holiday to Edinburgh last year. The pair met in a city centre bar before heading back to Grant’s home in the Newington area of the capital.
But after a short time in the flat Grant was said to have become aggressive towards the woman and began shouting and swearing at her. Edinburgh Sheriff Court was told there was a struggle between the pair and the woman had been left “disturbed” and “fearful” at the incident and had reported him to the police.
Grant appeared at the city court on Thursday, June 1, and pleaded guilty to an amended charge of behaving in a threatening or abusive manner towards Ms Astley. He had a not guilty plea accepted by the Crown to assaulting Ms Astley by seizing her by the hair and causing her to fall to the ground. His not guilty pleas to two further assaults on separate women at his home in February 2018 and May 2019 were also accepted by the Crown.
Prosecutor Klaudia Wasilewska told the court Grant and Ms Astley had met “after speaking to each other on a dating app” on the evening of March 16 last year. The fiscal said Ms Astley was “in Edinburgh for a short holiday” and after meeting up they had gone to Grant’s home at around 2am.
Ms Wasilewska said: “Shortly after their arrival it appears there was a disagreement and the complainer wanted to leave. She wanted the accused to order her a taxi or an Uber as she didn’t know where she was. There was an argument as she was leaving the property and there was struggle between them too. He asked her to leave and she wanted to leave too.”
The fiscal said the “very short struggle” took place near to the front door of the flat and as Grant was ushering the woman out of his flat. The court was told Ms Astley was “disturbed” by what happened and had later reported the incident to the police.
Solicitor Ms Jack told the court the couple had met up and gone for drinks at a nearby bar and were “both intoxicated” when they arrived at Grant’s home. Ms Jack said her client became irate as “she was ignoring him at one point” and he had “got up and ushered her out the door”.
Ms Jack said: “He knows it wasn’t any way to act, especially towards someone he has just met for the first time. He understands how fearful this must have been for the witness. He is extremely regretful for his actions and he does offer his apologies to the witness.”
The court was told Grant earns around £500 per week from his employment as a painter and the incident had been “out of character” for him and was deemed as “a one off” incident. Sheriff Derek O’Carroll said: “You are fortunate indeed that the charges against you have been reduced. In the circumstances I will deal with you today.” Grant was fined £450 and ordered to pay Ms Astley £300 in compensation.
Grant pleaded guilty to an amended charge of behaving in a threatening or abusive manner by acting in an aggressive manner towards Lowri Astley and did shout, swear and struggle with her at his home at Nicolson Street, Edinburgh, on March 16 last year.