Ex police officer could face prison for attacking former wife

Livingston Sheriff Court
Livingston Sheriff Court

A former police officer has been warned he could be sent to prison for stalking and attacking his estranged wife.

Brian Fernie pled guilty to three domestic abuse charges on the morning of his trial at Livingston Sheriff Court on Thursday.

He admitted vandalising a television by throwing a chair at it and smashing the screen in the marital home in Livingston, West Lothian, on 5 and 6 May, 2013.

He also admitted pinning Tracey Fernie to a bed with his bodily weight and pushing her off the bed with his foot, injuring her, at the same house in Easter Bankton on 7 August, 2014.

He further pled guilty to stalking his now ex partner by repeatedly taking her mobile phone without her consent and interrogating it; repeatedly texting her and monitoring her movements; sending her abusive messages, and taking her car keys.

The prosecution accepted not guilty pleas to allegations that Fernie twice assaulted 28-year-old Daniel Durie at the same address when he was aged 13-14 and that he stole his estranged wife’s dog from the house in June 2015.

Fernie, 48, is understood to have been a serving police officer in West Lothian at the time of the offences but has since left Police Scotland. He gave his address in court as Ochil View, Kinross.

Alan Jackson, defending, stressed that Fernie had no previous convictions and said the court was obliged to obtain background reports before sentencing.

Sheriff Susan Craig adjourned the case until 26 April for a community justice social work report and a restriction of liberty order assessment.

She told Fernie he had admitted “very serious” charges.

She warned: “They are charges which have the potential of resulting in a custodial sentence whether you have no previous convictions or not.

“It’s a requirement that I obtain a criminal justice social work reports, but all sentencing options will be available to the court to explore.”