Big Issue seller jailed for assaulting man with dog chain


A Big Issue seller, who assaulted a man with a dog lead during a fight in Dunfermline High Street, has been jailed. 

The offence took place more than three years ago but Christopher Guild failed to comply with community-based sentences previously imposed. 

The court’s patience finally ran out and he was sent to jail for four months. 

Guild (33), of Lumphinnans, appeared for sentencing at Dunfermline Sheriff Court. 

He had previously admitted that on 12th March 2015 in High Street, Dunfermline, he assaulted a man by striking him with a dog lead to his injury. 

He also admitted assaulting a woman by scratching her on the body to her injury during the same incident. 

The Crown accepted Guild was acting under provocation in both cases. 

Depute fiscal Dev Kapadia said that the incident occurred at 3pm and two others involved were known to Guild. 

There was a confrontation and Guild was brought to the ground. 

“He was in possession of a dog lead and was swinging it about. A passer-by intervened to separate them and tried to defuse and calm the situation,” added Mr Kapadia. 

“However, the violence continued and this passer-by moved away to avoid being injured. 

“The accused then walked towards the man and woman and they were assaulted.”

The police were contacted by members of the public and the incident was captured on CCTV. 

Defence solicitor David Bell said, “Mr Guild has a very significant history of substance misuse. He walks with a stick, sells the Big Issue and has been a beggar on occasions. 

“He’s been a well-known character selling the Big Issue with his dog beside him. He didn’t take the dog lead there as a weapon, it was for his dog.” 

Sheriff Richard McFarlane, jailing Guild for four months, said, “It would have been a lot easier if you’d just carried out the community payback order.”

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