By Michael MacLeod

A GYMSLIP mum who had baby just four weeks ago was jailed for six months yesterday after being convicted of viciously attacking a girl she claimed had been bullying her through social networking site Bebo.

Justine Finlay, 16, was captured on CCTV stamping on her victim’s head at least 30 times despite several pals trying three times to haul her off the stricken girl she left for dead at bus stop.

As she was dragged from the dock at Dunfermline Sheriff Court yesterday she screamed “Please don’t – what about my bairn?”.

And in a dramatic twist last night she was released on interim bail after her legal team lodged an immediate appeal against the decision.

The court heard that Finlay repeatedly slammed her foot into her victim’s head and face, leaving her for dead in a bus stop.

The sickening attack was caught on CCTV cameras last year when Finlay, who has a four-week old child, was just 15.

The callous teen made a desperate bid to escape the dock in court yesterday, crying hysterically and screaming, “Please don’t jail me, what about my bairn?”

But Sheriff Ian Dunbar ruled that the vicious assault was “too serious” not to send the first offender down.

An argument on the social networking internet site was said to have sparked Finlay into a brutal drunken attack on a younger girl, also aged 15 at the time, who cannot be named for legal reasons.

Finlay claimed she was being threatened on Bebo by her eventual victim.

She said the girl left a message on her profile saying, “You’re a stupid little cow. I’ll batter you.”

Boozed up with a gang of teenage friends, Finlay lashed out at her victim outside the Partner’s bar in Cowdenbeath, Fife, last April.

With nothing more than a blank look on her face, Finlay watched on as her horrific assault was shown on TV screens in Dunfermline Sheriff Court yesterday.

Despite being pulled back three times by other youngsters, the ruthless teen shoved past them to repeatedly kick the girl as she laid helpless on the ground.

Her kicking was so ferocious that her shoe flew off at one point.

The police CCTV footage only caught the attack as it was taking place, meaning it may have lasted more than ten minutes. 

justine finlay

Her defence agent John Bain said: “Miss Finlay said there had been something of a history between her and the girl, in so far as there had been some fairly derogatory and offensive comments placed on Bebo about her.

“They said she was going to batter her and that she was a stupid little cow.

“She doesn’t seek to excuse her behaviour in any way, but merely explains that this is why she did it.

“It is extremely fortunate that the girl didn’t have more serious injuries.”

Depute fiscal Tracy Plant said the victim was taken to Fife’s Queen Margaret Hospital for x-rays but had only suffered bruising to her head.

Sheriff Dunbar said: “We have seen what can only be described as a very graphic video which shows you kicking and stamping on the head of this unfortunate young lady.

“That’s bad enough, but you’ve got back time and again to repeat this action.

“You were clearly involved in some other violence at this stage.

“I’ve considered what’s in your social enquiry report and in particular your personal circumstances and the fact you have a very young child.

“But having seen the video, this assault is so serious that it can’t be dealt with any other way than by a custodial sentence.”

Finlay burst into tears, screaming at the Sheriff, begging not to be jailed.

A police officer had to hold the door to the dock as she tried to escape, before leading her to the cells.

Finlay was released on bail yesterday afternoon and returned to her parents’ home in Fife.


  1. i personally saw what happened and the so called victim ,drug dealer chloe arnott kept screaming “your no hurting me ya cow” i saw her trying to sell drugs to a crowd who had gathered outside partners bar , arnott who is 16 years old drinks regularly in the bar with her mother, i think the incident has been blown out of proportion and looked much worse than it actually was ,a claim backed by arnotts slight bruising,although finlays actions cannot be condoned ,i think dunbars sentencing was absolutley disgraceful ,and he is not fit for purpose

  2. Michael MacLeod should be hung drewn and quartered for his deliberate sensationalism regarding the outcome of the case against a young loving mother,Dunbar and Mcleod a small town reporter are not fit for the purpose they think they serve. lets jail young caring mothers and let the drug pushing junkies roam free to peddle their death on the streets of our towns and cities

  3. i am writing in protest about the scandalous sentence given to young new mum miss Justine Finlay by idiot sheriff Dunbar,junkie drug peddler Chloe Arnot supposedly left on deaths doorstep suffered only minor abbrasions, yes! Justine should be punished ,but a custodial sentence dished out by the fool Dunbar is out of order ,surely community service would be a much better option ,hence puting something back into the community.and saving somone else lookling after her child,i for one would give my backing to any support group that is against a custodial sentence,afterall this is her first offence. Drug peddlers very seldom get a custodial sentence for a first offence the same could be said about muggers and thieves ,so this unjust sentence by Dunbar must surely be overturned

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