Dundee thug cleared of trying to murder baby dodges prison after assaulting the tot’s mum

Ryan Devaney

A man who was cleared of trying to murder a baby has avoided a prison sentence for assaulting the child’s mother.

Ryan Devaney, 28, was ordered to carry out 300 hours community service following a hearing at the High Court in Edinburgh yesterday.

Devaney last month stood trial on a charge of attempting to murder the child at various addresses in the Dundee area.

But after spending a day considering the evidence, jurors at the High Court in Edinburgh returned a verdict of not proven.

However, Devaney, formerly of Provost Road, pleaded guilty to five charges of physically assaulting the baby’s mother and a man, neither of whom can be named for legal reasons, on various occasions in 2015 and 2016.

Yesterday judge Lord Woolman imposed a community payback order after hearing a submission from defence advocate Brian McConnachie QC.

Passing sentence, Lord Woolman told Devaney that if he didn’t carry out the community service within a two-year period, he could be recalled to court and sent to prison.

Lord Woolman added: “If you do not comply with the terms of this order, you will come back to this court and you face the possibility of being sent to prison.”

At previous proceedings, the child’s mother told how she had allowed Devaney to care for the infant at her house in Dundee on a number of occasions.

She said she recorded Devaney after her son started to acquire a series of unexplained injuries.

The woman wept as she told a jurors how she became suspicious of what was happening when she wasn’t around the child and Devaney.

The mum also told the court that Devaney assaulted her on some occasions.

She described an incident in which Devaney put his hands around her throat.

Mr McConnachie said his client appreciated that his actions were wrong and he was determined to become law-abiding.

Mr McConnachie said Devaney had moved to Swindon and was working as a painter and decorator, adding: “He realises he no longer has a future in Dundee.”

Lord Woolman said he would review the order in a year’s time.