May 18 2011 by Stephen Robertson, Stirling Observer Wednesday
THE case against Stirling Albion’s Scott Buist, who was accused of assaulted a man in a city centre bar, has been deserted.
Buist (26) was charged with assaulting David Mellon, a steward, at Sportsters in King Street on September 26.
He pleaded not guilty and lodged a special defence of self-defence.
But the case was dropped when he appeared at Stirling Sheriff Court for trial on Monday.
The court heard that an essential Crown witness, said by fiscal depute Lindsey Brooks to be a DJ who occasionally worked at the pub, was not present.
Mrs Brooks wanted to fix a new date for the trial.
However, Sheriff Desmond McCaffrey pointed out that the same witness had failed to show at a previous trial date on April 18 and questioned how this witness had been cited.
He was told that on both occasions the citations had gone to Sportsters, where he sometimes worked. The court was also told there was no forwarding address for the witness.
Defence solicitor Brian Allison opposed the adjournment, saying: “More could and should have been done following the non-appearance of the witness on April 18. Today we are in the same position that we were in a month ago.
“I would suggest that the matter is brought to a conclusion now.”
Sheriff McCaffrey refused the motion for an adjournment and Buist, from Falkirk, was told that he was free to go.
Outside court Mr Allison said: “Mr Buist has always maintained his innocence in this case. It has taken a long time for it to be deserted.
“He is glad that he is finally able to put the matter behind him. He now knows the case is entirely finished.”
Buist added: “I'm now just looking forward to concentrating on my playing career.”
He is one of a handful of Albion players who have been offered a deal for next season.