Man in court over ‘bottle attack’ on priest in Edinburgh cathedral

A man has appeared in court on petition in connection with an alleged attack on a priest in an Edinburgh cathedral.

Thursday, 29th July 2021, 4:18 pm
'Bottle attack' - Fr Jamie McMorrin

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Jason Irvine, 31, appeared in private at Edinburgh Sheriff Court and faced two charges of assault.

Irvine, of no fixed abode, made no plea during the brief court hearing and he was remanded in custody.

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The case was committed for further examination and Irvine is expected to appear back at the capital court within eight days.

The court appearance comes just three days after Father Jamie McMorrin, 35, was allegedly assaulted as he sat praying at St Mary’s Catholic Cathedral in Edinburgh city centre at around 9.35am on Monday.

A statement released on Tuesday by the Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh said the priest managed to fend off his attacker with a chair before they left the cathedral. The priest escaped without injury.

There was also a second alleged assault that was said to have taken place ten minutes later at the city’s Princes Street Gardens.

On Monday, deputy first minister John Swinney tweeted to say the alleged assault on the priest was a “terrible, frightening and totally unacceptable incident.”

According to details published on the website for St Mary’s Catholic Cathedral, Father Jamie McMorrin was born in Uddingston in South Lanarkshire and grew up in Kinghorn, Fife.

He studied History and International Relations at University of St Andrews and, after graduating, spent a year working for the Scottish Catholic Observer.

He trained for the priesthood at the Pontifical Scots College, Rome, specialising in Liturgy.

Father McMorrin was ordained in St Mary’s Catholic Cathedral by Archbishop Leo Cushley in June, 2016.

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