Long jail stretch for town centre attacks.

Lee Murray was jailed at Hamilton Sheriff Court.

Lee Murray was jailed at Hamilton Sheriff Court.

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A former boxer was jailed for three years and eight months today after he was convicted of two serious assaults in Motherwell town centre.

One of Lee Murray’s victims had his jaw broken and the other suffered bleeding to the brain after being knocked to the ground.

Murray (21), of Lorne Drive, Motherwell, was sent to prison despite glowing letters of references from his bosses. He now faces losing his job.

He was found guilty of assaulting Kieran Walsh to his severe injury and permanent disfigurement in Airbles Street in May 2014. He was also convicted of assaulting Graeme Turner by punching him repeatedly to his severe injury in High Road, Motherwell, in November that year.

Mr Walsh hit his head on the ground and was knocked out. He needed an operation on a broken jaw and a cut on his forehead has left a scar.

Hamilton Sheriff Court heard that Murray had been in the company of Commonwealth Games boxing bronze medallist Reece McFadden before the assault.

Steel erector Murray denied being responsible. He said he had been talking to McFadden after they’d been at a nightclub.

He suggested McFadden could have been involved in the attack. Murray said he didn’t see McFadden hit anyone, but he did see the boxer run off after Mr Walsh was hit.

Regarding the alleged attack in High Road, Murray said he acted in self defence after being assaulted in the street as he left a friend’s 21st birthday party.

The court heard Mr Turner was knocked out by punches which floored him. He suffered two black eyes and, after complaining of dizziness, had a scan which showed minor bleeding to the brain. This wasn’t considered life-threatening and he made a full recovery.

Defence agent Eddie Robertson said Murray has matured since the incidents and now doesn’t drink at all. He is highly thought of at work and is in a stable relationship with a young woman.

Mr Robertson said his client has a good wage and would be willing to pay compensation to the victims.

However, Sheriff Shiona Waldron said the assaults appered to be “completely unprovoked” and had resulted in serious injuries.

She told Murray: “Background reports say you continue to deny any responsibility and any remorse is directed towards your own situation rather than the victims. Only a serious custodial sentence can be imposed.”

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