A NAVY man who bit a steward at a Helensburgh pub and went on to knock a police officer to the ground has been spared a prison sentence.

Daniel Paige, 28, appeared in court for sentencing on August 29 after pleading guilty at an earlier hearing to carrying out the two assaults on Sunday, February 11.

Dumbarton Sheriff Court was told last week how Paige had been acting in an “erratic manner” at around 1.20am in the Logie Baird pub in James Street, Helensburgh.

Two bar stewards decided to eject Paige from the premises and took hold of him by his arms.

But as they did, Paige bit one of the men on the arm, causing “instant pain and bruising”, said depute fiscal Kara Watt.

Police were flagged down outside the premises and they arrested Paige and started transporting him to Clydebank police office to be processed and interviewed.

But as the police vehicle passed through Dumbarton, the officers had to stop in Cardross Road, near Havoc Road, and get out of the vehicle to check on Paige’s welfare.

Ms Watt told the court: “On doing so, the accused lunged at the officer, struck him to the face with his hands, which were still within handcuffs, knocking the police witness to the ground.”

Paige’s defence solicitor Jonathan Paul told the court that his client was currently being evicted from his home in Kinnaird Drive, Linwood, but said that he would be housed at the naval base at Faslane in the event of his not being sent to prison.

Mr Paul said his client “imbibed quite a bit of alcohol, to say the least”.

He told Sheriff Simon Pender: “I’m just putting it into context. He appreciates you could send him to prison today.

“He has a good job with the Navy. If he is given a custodial sentence, he will lose his job.”

Mr Paul said the Navy would not send Paige to sea if he were punished with unpaid work.

Sheriff Simon Pender said: “Alcohol is no excuse whatsoever.”

He ordered Paige to do 270 hours of unpaid work within 10 months as a punishment.

The sentence was reduced from 300 hours – the maximum permitted under the law – because Paige had pleaded guilty just before a trial.