A REVELLER on a stag party threw a traffic cone from a 60ft-high bridge on to the street below – narrowly avoiding a police officer and several pedestrians.
Robert Davidson, 19, picked up the item on George IV Bridge and threw it on to the Cowgate in an “idiotic” act which was harrowingly similar to an incident at the same spot which left a young woman temporarily paralysed.
Edinburgh Sheriff Court heard yesterday that the teenager had been visiting the Capital from Northern Ireland for the Royal Highland Show.
He pleaded guilty to culpably and recklessly throwing the yellow no-waiting cone over the parapet to the danger of injury to those below on June 20.
Fiscal depute Francesca Risino told the court that the incident – which was witnessed by a police officer – happened at around 2.30am near the Movement nightclub.
“The cone landed with a loud bang on the pavement and narrowly missed several people and door staff,” she said.
“It bounced off the pavement and appeared to strike a female on the leg, then hit a crowd control barrier which was knocked over.”
The police officer called the control room, which sent a car to George IV Bridge to track down the culprit.
He tried to trace the woman who was feared to be injured, but she had left the scene.
Ms Risino said: “A CCTV operator saw Davidson had made his way from the bridge to the High Street. Police stopped the group he was in and asked to speak to him.
“The group were all from Northern Ireland.
“They were spoken to about the potential fatal consequences of the incident. They said they didn’t know the drop from the side of the road was so significant. They seemed genuinely concerned.”
The court was told that Davidson was “utterly ashamed” of his behaviour and understood the gravity of the case as soon as the potential consequences were explained.
Sheriff Norman McFadyen fined Davidson £700 for the “stupidity” of his behaviour after being told that the teenager from Belfast had no previous criminal record.
In recent years there have been a number of incidents involving items being thrown from George IV Bridge.
In 2006, Kate Flannery, a 23-year-old student, suffered a fractured skull after being hit on the Cowgate by a cone thrown from the bridge.