A JOHNSTONE man has walked free from court after being cleared of battering a fellow motorist.

Norman Hope, who is battling cancer, was said to have assaulted Greig McHugh in Glenfield Crescent, Paisley.

Hope, 42, denied assaulting Mr McHugh, 33, by pushing him on the body, causing him to fall to the ground, climbing on top of him, holding him down, raining punches on his head and body and repeatedly kicking him on the body, leaving him injured, on August 17 last year.

He was also accused of breaking Section 38(1) of the Criminal Justice and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2010 by shouting and swearing on the same date.

Hope, of Maple Drive, Johnstone, went on trial over the allegations at Paisley Sheriff Court, with Mr McHugh called to give evidence.

Mr McHugh claimed he thought he was going to die at Hope’s hands after being chased through the streets of Paisley.

He explained: “I drove up to a junction and pulled out in front of the car behind me. It was my fault. He began peeping his horn and revving his engine. I could see him in my rear view mirror, he was swerving from side to side, he was waving his middle finger.”

Mr McHugh said he drove to Glenfield Crescent after being followed for around five minutes, stopped his car and got out to confront Hope.

He added: “I was fearing for my life at this point, he was being very aggressive. He overpowered me and proceeded to beat me up on the concrete floor.”

When cross-examined by Hope’s lawyer, defence solicitor Peter Galletly, Mr McHugh admitted he had a knife with him on the day in question.

And, after hearing that Mr McHugh had been charged over possession of the knife on that day and admitted his guilt on a previous occasion, procurator fiscal depute Margaret McCallum told Sheriff David Pender she was no longer seeking a conviction against Hope.

He was found not guilty of both charges and told he could leave the court as a free man.