Glasgow & West Scotland

St Mirren footballer Paul McGowan sentenced over police attacks

Paul McGowan Image copyright PA
Image caption Paul McGowan admitted assaulting two police officers in North Lanarkshire

A Scottish Premiership footballer has been given a non-custodial sentence for assaulting two police officers.

St Mirren midfielder Paul McGowan, 26, admitted kicking the two officers on the body in Airdrie and at Coatbridge police office on 11 August last year.

At Airdrie Sheriff Court he was told to carry out 130 hours of unpaid work and given a one-year supervision order.

Sheriff Frank Pieri told McGowan that his punishment was a direct alternative to custody.

Previously, the court heard how McGowan, who has a previous conviction for police assault, admitted kicking PC Edward Gilmartin on the body, and repeatedly kicking Sgt Tony Fitzpatrick on the body.

'Completely unacceptable'

Following the court proceedings, St Mirren said: "Today's sentencing brings this deeply regrettable matter to a close.

"We have been very clear that we do not condone Paul's actions in any way. Everyone involved with St Mirren Football Club is fully aware that we expect them to act in accordance with our commitment to respect and tolerance in our community.

"Paul knows what he did was wrong and completely unacceptable. As a club, our long-term objective is to help him learn from his behaviour and move on with his life and career and, as such, we have no further comment to make."

McGowan started his career with Celtic, where he made his debut in 2007.

He failed to break into the first team and was sent out on loan several times.

The midfielder spent the 2006/07 season with Morton, where he won the Second Division title and was also named SFL young player of the month for January 2007.

McGowan then spent the second half of the 2008/09 season with Hamilton Academicals in the SPL.

He moved on loan to SPL side, St Mirren, for the 2010/11 season.

After this, Celtic released him from his contract and he signed with St Mirren permanently.

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