Teenager charged after allegedly punching leading councillor

East Lothian provost John McMillan confronted a group of youths before the attempted assault by the 15-year-old in Haddington.

Teenager, 15, charged after allegedly punching leading East Lothian councillor LDRS

A 15-year-old youth has been charged by police after East Lothian’s provost was attacked in broad daylight as he returned from an official event.

Councillor John McMillan was on his way home when he approached a group of rowdy youngsters in Haddington.

Witnesses said the provost appealed to the teenagers who were between 14 and 15 years old to quieten down before one of the youths threw a punch towards him.

A number of locals who witnessed the shocking attack called the police as the youngsters appeared to confront Mr McMillan in numbers.

The incident happened near Ross’s Close, in the town, which has been at the centre of some antisocial behaviour incidents in recent months.

One witness said: “I saw John appealing to the group to behave but one of them became aggressive and turned on him. Police turned up and at least one of them was taken away.

“It was quite shocking they had obviously been drinking.”

A police spokesperson confirmed the incident saying: “Around 3pm on Saturday, 11 February, 2023, we received a report of an assault near to Ross Close, Haddington.

 “A 15-year-old boy has been charged in connection and a report will be sent to the relevant authority.”

Mr McMillan who has been provost of East Lothian for six years and, as a local councillor, has led on initiatives to tackle antisocial behaviour and been involved in many campaigns promoting the county, was understood to have been shaken by the incident but did not receive a serious injury.

He said: “I can confirm that I was involved in an incident within Haddington that police are investigating and so it would not be appropriate to comment further at this stage.”

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