Page last updated at 15:38 GMT, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 16:38 UK

Woman smacked girl after headbutt

Court coat of arms
The woman was granted an absolute discharge at Livingston Sheriff Court

A mother who was charged with assault after smacking her violent teenage daughter has walked free from court in West Lothian.

The 43-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, admitted smacking her daughter on the bottom.

The incident happened at their home in March after the girl headbutted her mother and stabbed her in the thigh with a pair of scissors.

The 14-year-old was described as having problems with drink, drugs and sex.

Livingston Sheriff Court was told the parent, a first offender, was arrested after she had smacked the girl's bottom leaving it "bruised and sore" while she herself was left with several injuries inflicted by her child.

It seems to me that you are hugely more sinned against than you are sinner
Sheriff Martin Edington

The girl is now in voluntary care where she is being given counselling for substance abuse problems.

The mother-of-six pleaded guilty to assault.

But Sheriff Martin Edington said: "It seems to me that you are hugely more sinned against than you are sinner."

The absolute discharge means the single-mum will receive no sentence and have no criminal record.

Fiscal depute Lisa McCloy had told the court the troubled girl had returned to her home in West Lothian at about 2000 GMT on 19 March this year and began arguing with her mother.

Miss McCloy said: "The accused slapped the complainer across the bottom several times.

"The injuries received were bruising and soreness across the buttock and when the police spoke with the accused it was noted that the accused had several injuries also arising from this incident.

"The accused admitted her part in this incident and explained that she was assaulted by her daughter."

'Worst nightmare'

Representing the woman, Iain Smith said the daughter had "ideas above her station" and had problems with alcohol, drugs and sex.

Mr Smith said: "This was a fairly old 14-year-old who had ideas above her station, she had been drinking and taking drugs.

"She was effectively her parent's worst nightmare.

"The child head-butted her and stabbed her with scissors in the thigh."

Mr Smith said that as well as the stab wound, his client had suffered bruising and scratches to her hands and shin, as well as bruising and swelling to her face.

He said the mother had suffered sustained abuse at the hands of the child and had also found condoms in the underage girl's room.

'Teenagers lash-out'

Mr Smith added: "This is a lady who has never been in trouble before who has attempted to deal with her child patiently over a number of years."

After the hearing the relieved mum said she was still hoping to rebuild her relationship with her troubled child.

She said: "I am relieved and hope we can get back together, I have been seeing her regularly and things seem to be working out.

"Teenagers will always lash-out and scream. I tried to get help with her but it came too late.

"I was pushed to the limit and it had to come to that before we got help.

"But I understand the authorities taking it seriously in this day and age."

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