A MAN has narrowly avoided a return to prison after admitting assaulting an officer who refused to cut his hair.

Shaun Blair was a prisoner at HMP Glenochil when the incident occurred on March 13 of last year.

Susannah Hutchison told Alloa Sheriff Court last week that at around 1.15pm on the day in question, Blair was in a room with prison officers also present who asked him to leave.

He refused the request, causing the officers to call for reinforcements and to physically remove the accused.

Blair then resisted that and "lashed out" by punching one of the officers on the mouth before he was brought under control.

Mr Morrison, representing the 26-year-old, told the court that the incident came about because of an issue with a haircut.

The accused had a prior arrangement with one of the officers who would cut his hair for him, but other prisoners found out and began asking the officer if he would cut their hair too.

The officer responded by saying: "Nobody is getting one," which angered Blair as he had agreed to get one beforehand.

Mr Morrison said: "He did not want to go from the room then punched the officer."

The defence agent added that Blair's record "does not do him any favours" before explaining that he has been out of trouble since his release in October 2018, largely due to leaving the local area and moving to Fife.

Sheriff Pino Di Emidio told Blair, of Urguhart Green, Glenrothes, that he is now at the age where he should be "sorting himself out", adding that for this offence prison was a serious consideration.

However, he option for a community payback order, sentencing him to 120 hours of unpaid work.