Glasgow & West Scotland

Three youths jailed over Tesco assault of John Ferguson

Three youths who ruined a teenager's hopes of a military career in an unprovoked attack have been jailed.

Steven Qua and Ross McColm, both 18, and Shaun Qua, 17, admitted assaulting 18-year-old John Ferguson at a Tesco store in Ayr on 28 October last year.

The High Court in Edinburgh heard Mr Ferguson was left with serious injuries which ended hopes of an army career.

Qua and McColm were detained for five years. Shaun Qua was detained for four-and-a-half years.

The Court heard how Mr Ferguson had gone to the supermarket with two friends.

Victim semi-conscious

One of them, Lee Jackson, 16, was head butted by Shaun Qua, before Mr Ferguson was chased by the trio across the car park.

He was caught and repeatedly punched and kicked before falling to the ground. He was kicked on the head and lost consciousness as the assault continued.

A security guard found Mr Ferguson lying semi-conscious. He helped him back to the store and emergency services were alerted.

The victim was taken to Ayr Hospital and found to have a fractured skull and blood on the left side of the brain and was transferred to Glasgow's Southern General hospital for surgery.

A surgeon regarded his injuries as life-threatening and his skull was drilled through to remove the clot and control bleeding.

He later said that the injury suffered by Mr Ferguson was caused by an assault "with a significant amount of force being applied".

Steven Qua, from Ochiltree, McColm, from Ayr, and Shaun Qua, from Ayr, were originally charged with attempting to murder Mr Ferguson.

The Crown later accepted their guilty pleas to assaulting him to his severe injury and to the danger of his life.

Sentencing them, judge Lord Brodie told the Qua brothers and McColm that they had committed an "entirely unprovoked assault" on Mr Ferguson.

The judge said: "He had ambitions to join the Army, to better himself, to make a career in life and the information before me is that as a result of the assault his application was turned down."

Lord Brodie said he was told that "a sense of revulsion has been expressed in relation to this attack in Ayr".

The judge added: "If that is so, it is understandable."

"Notwithstanding your youth and your difficult backgrounds I have no alternative, as I am told you understand, but to impose a significant custodial sentence."

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