Three years jail for Fife woman who left victim (78) with a broken hip
A Fife woman, who brutally attacked a vulnerable 78-year-old, leaving her with a broken hip, has been jailed for three years.
Shirley Coulter was previously found guilty of carrying out a series of vicious assaults during a night of drunken violence, after a trial at Dunfermline Sheriff Court.
When she returned for sentencing Coulter was still showing no remorse and sticking to her claims she acted in self-defence.
The OAP suffered multiple injuries when she was brutally assaulted by the drunk stranger. An enjoyable night out at the bingo then a visit to a friend’s home in Glenrothes had ended in a terrifying ordeal.
The woman was forced into giving Coulter a lift in her car and was then punched in the face as she drove.
The attack continued when the pensioner stopped her car. She was punched by 41-year-old Coulter, knocked to ground and then her head was kicked “like a football”.
The jury was shown photographs taken after the attack of the woman’s swollen, bruise-covered face.
The OAP said she thought her dead body would be found lying in the street the next morning.
The victim, Janice Nolan, was found lying in the street in agony and covered in blood. As a result of the drink-driving complaint the police repeatedly tried to take a breath sample from the badly injured woman.
The horrific incident began when Ms Nolan, after a night at the bingo, went to visit a friend, 62-year-old Kathleen Shevlin at her home.
When she was there, Coulter started banging on the door, forced her way into the house and started making accusations against Ms Shevlin, who did not know her.
It turned out that Coulter was the daughter of a former friend of Ms Shevlin and was accusing her of stealing rings.
Coulter then remained in the house for more than two hours, drinking and then she attacked Ms Shevlin, punching her in the face.
After a three-day jury trial at Dunfermline Sheriff Court, Coulter, of Barrie Path, Glenrothes, was found guilty of the four charges she faced.
On 1st August last year at an address in Napier Road, Glenrothes, she entered uninvited, shouted, swore and made offensive remarks to Kathleen Shevlin.
She assaulted Ms Shevlin by pushing her on the body and punching her on the head to her injury.
At Scott Road, Glenrothes, she stole an electronic cigarette.
In a car travelling from Napier Road to Scott Road, she assaulted Janice Nolan by punching her on the head, refusing to leave the vehicle when asked to do so, struggled with her then repeatedly punched her on the head and body, causing her to fall to the ground. Thereafter, as she lay on the ground Coulter repeatedly kicked her on the head and body, all to her severe injury.
Ms Nolan told the court that when she left her friend’s home, Coulter had gone in front of her and got in her car with her son.
“I said something like, ‘Oh, I see, I’m the taxi am I?”
Asked if she had asked Coulter to leave, the witness said, “I wouldn’t dare. She was confrontational and aggressive. I was being polite about it and trying to keep on her good side.”
The pensioner dropped off the boy at his home but his mother would not leave the car saying she was “going for a f****** drink”.
Ms Nolan drove on but did not know the area. Coulter asked to smoke the woman’s e-cigarette and when she asked for it back it triggered a violent reaction.
“I was driving along and the next thing her fist went right in my face. She burst my nose, broke my glasses, there was blood everywhere.
“I didn’t know where I was but kept driving. She then phoned the police saying she was being driven along Scott Road at 80mph by a drunk woman.
“I stopped the car, opened the passenger door and said, ‘You, out!’ trying to be assertive.
“She grabbed my car keys and said ‘You’re not f****** driving anywhere’. I tried to grab them back and she hit me.
“I was trying to hit her back but I’m 78. I don’t hit hard but I tried my best.”
Ms Nolan was knocked to the ground and the attack continued. “She was using my head like a football. She walked away and was thinking, ‘I’m still living’. Then she came back and started kicking me on the head again.”
Becoming upset, the frail pensioner said, “I had visions of somebody going to work in the morning and finding my body on the pavement.”
Sheriff Charles MacNair told Coulter, “What you did was inexcusable.”
When Mrs Nolan had agreed to run her home, “You repaid that by punching her whilst she was driving then when she demanded that you leave, you attacked her further including repeated kicks to her head and body,” added the sheriff.
“These were wholly unprovoked and unjustified assaults on these two people.”