Teenager fined for climbing Edinburgh Castle Rock to escape police

A teenager has been fined after climbing Edinburgh Castle rock after being chased by police.

Thomas Young, 18, found himself stuck up the city landmark in the pitch dark during a wet and windy night after refusing to come down.

Young had initially been ordered to be on good behaviour following a deferred sentence, and had panicked when police spotted him as a passenger in a car without a seatbelt.

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He fled the car and ran down Castle Terrace and into Princes Street Gardens before attempting to scale the volcanic rock below the castle.

Earlier this month, Young of Prestonfield Avenue, Edinburgh, appeared in the city’s Sheriff Court and admitted that on May 20 last year he: “culpably and recklessly climbed the rock, refused to come down, caused members of the police and fire service to attend and deprived the public of their services for several hours and endangered his life and the lives of the rescue services”.

Fiscal Depute, Fiona Caldwell, told the court that 14 rescue officers and police negotiators and been involved trying to get the teenager off the rock. It was dark, wet and very windy, she said. Floodlights had to be deployed and two members of the Fire and Rescue team had to abseil from the castle down the rock to reach Young.

The case was continued until today for the attention of Sheriff Alistair Noble, who had deferred sentence on previous charges of breach of the peace and culpable and reckless conduct.

Defence solicitor, Peter O’Neill, said Young “had turned the corner”. He was now a father with a ten week old son. He was in full employment and was thoroughly ashamed of his behaviour. “He is a young lad who has made mistakes” said Mr O’Neill.

Sheriff Noble admonished Young for the castle rock escapade, but fined him £300 for the earlier offences.