Couple who stabbed woman with hypodermic needle jailed

The trial took place at the High Court in Glasgow. Picture: John Devlin
The trial took place at the High Court in Glasgow. Picture: John Devlin

A COUPLE who carried out armed robberies on vulnerable victims on the streets of Edinburgh were yesterday jailed for a total of almost 14 years.

Serial offender Richard Sinclair, 47, was jailed for nine years and nine months and his accomplice mother-of-four Louise Millar was sentenced to four years and six months.

Jailing them judge Lady Scott said: “These are serious offences involving weapons. The public needs to be protected.”

Sinclair was also ordered to be monitored in the community for two years after his release from prison.

READ MORE: Woman stabbed with a hypodermic needle in series of attacks

The High Court in Glasgow heard that a motorist, searching for a cat she thought she had hit, was stabbed in the stomach by Sinclair with a hypodermic needle

As Cara McCran walked down Hawkhill Avenue, Edinburgh she was hit from behind and fell backwards onto a grass verge.

She lay there stunned while Sinclair and another unidentified man rifled through her pockets – although they found nothing to steal.

She was kicked by both men, and then Sinclair who has numerous convictions for theft, drugs offences and assault, stuck the hypodermic needle into her stomach.

Ms McCran was in shock, but eventually managed to text a friend who came and took her to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary with the needle still in her stomach.

Sinclair, who is a prisoner in Edinburgh Prison, admitted assaulting McCran and attempting to rob her at Hawkhill Avenue, Edinburgh, on May 25.

Prosecutor Gordon Lamont said: “She required to be put on a course of antibiotics for infection and accelerated boosters for hepatitis. Sinclair had hepatitis C at the time. It was distressing for her, but she did not develop the condition.”

Around 10 minutes later Sinclair and co-accused Louise Millar, 36,followed Jennifer McLean as she walked alone the street.

She could hear them talking behind her and then Millar, who had a screwdriver in her hand ran after her.

Millar made repeated stabbing motions towards Ms McLean’s facewith the screwdriver and then made off with her phone and bag.

Sinclair and Millar admitted assaulting Jennifer McLean by threatening her with a screwdriver and attempting to hit her on the face with it and robbing her of a phone and handbag.

The offence was committed on May 25 at Hawkhill Avenue, Edinburgh.

Millar also admitted being in possession of a screwdriver.

Both accused also admitted assaulting Alistair Nicol-Smith by presenting a garden tool at him, threatening him and robbing him on a mobile phone and wallet on May 26 at North Junction Street, Edinburgh.

The court heard Mr Nicol-Smith handed over his wallet and took them to a cash machine to prove he had no money in his account.

Sinclair and Millar were caught on CCTV nearby and recognised by police.

Millar, who is a prisoner in Edinburgh Prison, has previous convictions for shoplifting, drug offences and breach of the peace.

Solicitor advocate Iain Paterson, representing Sinclair said: “His offending is caused by his misuse of drugs and alcohol. He is motivated to try to change.”

Tony Lenehanm representing Millar said: “At the time she and her co-accused were in a relationship.

“Her previous offending is minor, She has never before served a custodial sentence and one would not have expected an escalation to this level.”