Rangers star Kenny Miller stopped knife-wielding friend, court told

RANGERS star Kenny Miller intervened to stop a knife-wielding friend threatening a pregnant woman hours after an Old Firm derby, a court has heard.

Kenny Miller in action for Rangers. Picture: Lisa Ferguson
Kenny Miller in action for Rangers. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

Stacey O’Donnell, 28, said she was confronted by William Steele, 36, following an argument with Ibrox ace Miller and his wife Laura.

The claim emerged in a statement given to police by Miss O’Donnell following the alleged incident at Da Luciano’s restaurant in Bothwell, Lanarkshire.

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She told officers she believed Steele, of Eaglesham, was going to stab her and only stopped when Miller ran towards him calling him a ‘f***ing idiot’.

Steele is on trial at Hamilton Sheriff Court where he has denied assaulting Miss O’Donnell outside Da Luciano’s by running towards her and threatening to stab her whilst in possession of a knife in September last year.

Prosecutors also claim he acted in a threatening and abusive manner likely to cause fear or alarm by brandishing a knife at Miss O’Donnell and threatening to stab her and her father.

A jury heard a police statement given by Miss O’Donnell two months after the alleged bust-up where she described how Miller had stepped in as she pleaded with Steele not to knife her.

She told officers investigating the case: “I thought there may be repercussions because of the people involved and I now want to make a statement.

“I could hear and see a car coming towards me, it was a Range Rover, a white one.

“I knew this was Billy’s car because I see it all the time.

“He parked next to the restaurant and ran towards me shouting, he was holding a knife in his hand.

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“The blade was a few inches long, it looked like it was in two parts but I couldn’t see the handle.

“I was pleading with him, I was terrified and I told him I was pregnant. I said ‘don’t stab me I’m pregnant’ and hoped that would talk him round.

“I could see Kenny on Silverwells Crescent, he was running towards Billy shouting to him ‘you are a f*****g idiot, what are you doing? Get in the car.’

“He seemed to listen to Kenny and he put the knife away and they got in the car. Billy was driving and Laura was there too.”

The trial had earlier heard Miss O’Donnell say her police statement with the knife allegations may have been wrong.

Asked why her story ‘appeared to be in two different worlds’ by depute fiscal Michael Macintosh, she replied: “The story has been fabricated and it is not as straight forward as they put in that statement.

“It was in the press that he had a knife but now I’m trying to explain that he had something in his hand but I don’t know what.”

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When asked if she was scared of Steele, Miss O’Donnell said: “I don’t like the situation at all that I’m in but I’m not afraid of him.”

Steele, of Eaglesham, also faces a charge that on November 2 last year he attempted to extort £45,000 from Hugh O’Donnell by threatening to harm him and members of his family at an address in Bothwell.

On the same date he is accused of trying to extort £50,000 from William McDonald and Ashley O’Donnell at another property in the village. He is alleged to have threatened to have them shot and damage their property and business unless the money was paid in cash.

The trial before Sheriff Ray Small continues.