A FIRE service chief who attacked a former SPL footballer after finding out that he had an affair with his wife was yesterday told to pay him £1,000 in compensation.
Mark Newton, 36, assaulted former Hearts and Falkirk goalkeeper Myles Hogarth, 38, as the professional footballer was leaving the junior club for which he now plays.
The footballer’s injuries as a result of the attack included a bruised back, cuts on the head and a two centimetre-long scar on his face.
But Newton avoided jail after Mr Hogarth wrote to the sentencing sheriff, pleading for mercy.
Falkirk Sheriff Court was told that Newton had found out that Mr Hogarth had been involved in a three-year affair with Newton’s 27-year-old wife Janet.
The court heard how Newton had tracked the player down and attacked him with the baseball bat, repeatedly striking him on the body.
When Mr Hogarth ran off, Newton – a crew commander with the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service in the training division at Falkirk – chased after the player and then repeatedly kicked him on the head and body.
The court heard that Mr Hogarth did not want police to become involved, but a member of the public witnessed the attack, noted Newton’s car registration as he drove off, and alerted officers about the incident.
Beverly Adam, prosecuting, said police stopped Newton in his car just ten minutes after the assault took place.
He immediately blurted out: “I hit a guy with a baseball bat. He had been f***ing about with my wife.”
Yesterday Newton, of Grangemouth, appeared for sentence after pleading guilty to assaulting Mr Hogarth to his severe injury and permanent disfigurement.
The incident occurred at Camelon Juniors’ ground in Falkirk on 21 May last year.
Newton’s solicitor, Gordon Addison, said: “This plays out with the drama that happens on television and this is no stranger than fiction.
“He is a normal hard-working citizen and family man who has snapped in this situation.
“The complainer has made his position clear from the outset that he had no interest in Mr Newton being charged or punished.
“He accepts some responsibility for this situation.
“Mr Newton has taken steps to make sure this won’t happen again.
“The masterplan is to reconcile with his family.”
Sheriff John Mundy ordered Newton to pay compensation to Mr Hogarth, but made no other order.
Sheriff Mundy told Newton: “You will appreciate that this is a very serious case and it could have had much more serious consequences. Fortunately, it was only this.
“I take into account your references, that you have no previous convictions, and that you have employment, and I have the letter from the complainer stating his position.
“All that has persuaded me in taking the unusual step of not imposing a custodial sentence or community payback order.
“I will instead impose a compensation order and that should be for £1,000.”
Since the affair was exposed, Mr Hogarth and his wife Jennifer have split, and the family’s home in Falkirk has been sold.
Newton and his wife, Janet, who married in 2007, have also separated, it emerged.
On leaving court after his appearance, Newton said: “It’s a bad situation, I don’t want to say anything more.”