IM this article to a friend!

March 26, 2003

Deaf teenager locked up for brutal knifing

From: Glasgow Evening Times, UK - Mar 26, 2003

A PROFOUNDLY deaf teenager who stabbed a street busker four times has been sent to a young offenders' institution for four years.

The High Court in Glasgow heard Steven McMillan, 18, from East Kilbride, faced a life of hell in custody as his deafness would make him a target of ridicule.

His defence agent, Donald McLeod, told the judge, Lord Bracadale: "He lives in a silent world which does not permit much enjoyment of TV or radio, a silent world in which he wouldn't be able to have much in the way of conversation with fellow inmates.

"Catching up on day- to-day events can make prison life much easier to bear for most people, but for him this will be written out of the script."

At an earlier appearance, McMillan, now living in Hull, admitted the serious assault.

The court heard that his victim, busker Terry McCabe, had called his girlfriend a "dog".

Mr McLeod said that McMillan had become frustrated at trying to rebut the insults.

He added: "During the confrontation his hearing aid was quite cruelly taken away."

Sentencing McMillan, Lord Bracadale said he was taking account of the difficulties he would face in detention.

When McMillan first appeared in court it was revealed Mr McCabe, 35, almost died after losing half his blood volume by stab wounds through his bladder and colon.

For a year after the attack he had to use a colostomy bag, fearing it would be permanent.

The street entertainer was attacked as he sang and played his guitar to 30 youngsters.

McMillan was on a visit to his family in East Kilbride on Septem-ber 1, 2001, when the attack took place, near Reith Drive and Owen Avenue in the town.

McMillan's father, David, 45, and another man, Greg Bissett, 21, had pleas of not guilty accepted by the court.

All three had originally been charged with attempted murder.

Mr McMillan, originally from East Mains, was also cleared of hitting Mr McCabe with a hammer and attempting to defeat justice.

Afterwards Mr McCabe said: "The worst part was having a colostomy bag. I had to wait a year to have the operation reversed."

Copyright © 2003 SMG Newspapers Ltd. All Rights Reserved