A FATHER of four who assaulted a police officer by grabbing him by the testicles after a booze binge in Balloch has been spared a prison sentence.

Richard O'Gormley, from Seedhill in Paisley, had consumed large amounts of alcohol while camping with his family in Balloch Country Park during the summer.

Dumbarton Sheriff Court heard on Friday that police were called out to the Loch Lomond site on July 2 due to his increasingly aggressive behaviour.

O'Gormley, 35, was said to have drank two bottles of Mad Dog and six cans of Dragon Soop in the presence of his children, aged 12, 11, 3 and 2.

The court heard that police arrived just before midnight and found O'Gormley within a tent. After speaking to him, officers were told to 'f**k off' and when asked to calm down he replied 'get to f**k'.

O'Gormley then lunged at a male police officer, grabbing him by the testicles. Another officer tried to take control of O'Gormley but he kicked out, making contact with the constable's body on several occasions.

The officers eventually managed to get him on the ground and placed him in the prone position, but he still continued to kick out.

Police called for assistance while O'Gormley shouted 'get to f**k, I'll kill you c***s'.

He was taken to Clydebank police office and held overnight before being charged due to his level of intoxication.

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Defence solicitor Nadine Dormer told Friday's hearing: "Mr O'Gormley is appalled by his behaviour. He has a deep sense of regret and sorrow.

"He woke up in cells the next day with no recollection of his actions.

"He has not seen his four children since.

"He does have a record, but not for any other matters of violence."

Sheriff John Hamilton said: "I find it difficult to imagine, with four young children, two of them aged just two and three, why he [O'Gormley] would deem it acceptable to consume this much alcohol."

Making note of O'Gormley's limited record, Sheriff Hamilton issued a community payback order of 180 hours of unpaid work, to be completed within six months, as a direct alternative to custody.

O'Gormley will also be under social worker's supervision for a period of 12 months.

The Sheriff told him: "I think you should consider any offer of help with regards to alcohol."