Driver who tried to hit man with baseball bat has licence bid denied

Joseph Kinloch was ordered to carry out 90 hours of community service after he was convicted following the incident.

Private hire driver who tried to hit man with ‘baseball bat’ in Glasgow has licence bid denied iStock

A private hire driver who attempted to hit a man with a “baseball bat” has had his licence renewal bid turned down.

Joseph Kinloch was ordered to carry out 90 hours of community service after he was convicted following an incident in September 2019.

A Police Scotland representative told Glasgow’s licensing committee how Mr Kinloch did “repeatedly attempt” to strike a man “with a baseball bat on the body”.

He was also found to have an “offensive weapon, namely a baseball bat” in a public place “without reasonable excuse”, the officer said. Mr Kinloch’s solicitor later said the item had been a “baton”.

Councillors were told he had reacted to “significant” provocation as the victim had previously abused a family member of the driver.

The committee was split over whether to renew Mr Kinloch’s licence, but a casting vote from the chairman, councillor Alex Wilson, meant the application was refused.

Mr Kinloch’s solicitor said his client had pled guilty to a “reduced charge” of “an attempt to assault” and had faced a “substantial degree of provocation”.

“I’m not saying that paints him in a particularly good light,” he added. “But this was not an assault which occasioned any permanent harm to the complainer.”

He said the complainer was “previously in a relationship” with a family member of Mr Kinloch and there had been “domestic abuse”. This caused Mr Kinloch “some considerable disquiet”, the committee was told.

The solicitor said the driver had met the complainer “quite by chance” on the day of the incident. There was an argument, he said, but added his client “did not use the item” and there was “no harm to the complainer”.

Mr Kinloch had shown “considerable remorse” and was assessed, in a criminal justice social work report, as being at “low risk” of re-offending, councillors heard.

Since the offence, he has continued working “without any issues whatsoever”, his solicitor said. He has been employed in “the taxi business for 31 years”. “This is the only blemish on his character,” the solicitor added.

Councillor Wilson said: “I know quite a lot about sport in Glasgow; which baseball team does Mr Kinloch play for?”

The applicant’s solicitor said the item was a “baton” but added his client had said he had kept a baseball, baseball bat and glove in his car for use by his children.

Councillor Wilson said: “He bumped into the other person by chance, and just by chance, he just so happens to have in his hand a baton?”

The solicitor said the driver, who hadn’t been working at the time, had gone back to his car. He said it was an “unthinking action” and “out of character at a time of heated emotion”.

Councillor Wilson said he was concerned that there “could be further remonstration with members of the public”.

The solicitor said that was a “leap too far” and Mr Kinloch would not have been in court but for the complainer’s behaviour towards the driver’s family member.

Bailie Jim Kavanagh said: “Domestic abuse of a family member brings considerable strain on the family from whichever background they came from. In the heat of the moment, no one can say what they’re going to do because you never know until you’re in the moment.”

He added: “Everybody deserves chances in life and it’s our job to make these decisions.”

Councillor Wilson and councillor Zen Ghani voted to refuse the application while Bailie Kavanagh and Bailie Thomas Kerr voted to renew the licence for a restricted period of one year and issue a “severe warning”. Councillor Wilson’s casting vote meant the licence bid was refused.

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