Pair to face trial over alleged knuckle duster attack

Both men denied the charges at Stirling Sheriff Court today

Both men denied the charges at Stirling Sheriff Court today

A businessman is to face trial accused of battering a man with a knuckle duster, punching his wife in the face, threatening to set fire to their home and kill their son.

Robert Kelbie (33) is said to have launched the alleged assaults on the couple at the old Lanark Racecourse in June.

It is alleged that on June 26, 2016 at rugby pitches on the site of the historic racecourse, which closed in 1977, he assaulted Archibald Stewart to his injury by repeatedly punching him on the head while he had a metal knuckle duster wrapped round his hand.

It is alleged that he also assaulted Maureen Stewart by punching her on the face and pushing her on the body, to her injury.

A co-accused, Alex Forbes (25), is accused of behaving in a threatening and abusive manner likely to cause a reasonable person fear and alarm on the same occasion by uttering threats of violence towards Mrs Stewart while brandishing a knife, and of unlawful possession of a knife in a public place.

Kelbie, of Blairadam, Fife, is further accused of uttering repeated threats of violence towards Mr and Mrs Stewart in a phone call made to them at their address in Laurieston, Falkirk seven months earlier – on October 21, 2015 – in which he threatened to kill their son and set fire to their home.

At Stirling Sheriff Court today, both men denied all the charges.

Kelbie’s solicitor Ken Dalling confirmed all was ready for trial. Forbes was also said to be ready for trial.

Sheriff William Gilchrist continued the case for trial by jury at a sitting at Stirling due to start on December 5.

The sheriff continued Kelbie’s bail, while Forbes, who was described on court papers as a prisoner in Low Moss jail, East Dunbartonshire, was remanded in custody.