Jail sentence for 'Naked Rambler'
Published 13/09/2012 | 12:02
The man known as the Naked Rambler has been jailed for five months for a breach of the peace after he told a court he would not co-operate with social workers tasked with assessing his mental health.
Stephen Gough, 53, who has spent much of the past six years in prison for similar offences, was convicted of the charge last month after walking unclothed near a children's play park in Dunfermline, Fife, on July 20.
The incident took place three days after Gough, a well-known campaigner for his right to appear nude in public, was released from prison in Perth.
The former Marine, from Eastleigh, Hampshire, was sentenced at Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court, where he appeared naked in the dock and represented himself.
Sheriff James Williamson had expressed his concern at a previous hearing about the accused's demeanour and ordered social workers to produce a report assessing Gough's emotional and mental health.
But the sheriff told the rambler he had "no alternative" but to impose another custodial sentence after Gough refused to meet the officials and indicated he has no intention of doing so in the future.
Gough denied conducting himself in a disorderly manner and committing a breach of the peace by walking naked in Dunfermline's Cairncubie Road, in the Townhill area, arguing there is nothing about him that was indecent, alarming or offensive. But he was convicted of the charge after a two-hour trial, in which he again appeared naked in the dock.
He appeared tearful at points during the earlier hearing, behaviour which in part led the sheriff to call for the mental health assessment. He warned the rambler - who said he has no intention of changing his ways and wearing clothes in public - that he could "end up serving prison sentence after prison sentence".
But Gough confirmed he had not yet co-operated with the social work department and was not prepared to meet them.
Sheriff Williamson said Gough's "arrogance" continues to this day. He said: "In these circumstances I have no alternative but to impose a custodial sentence. I take into account that I consider there to be no real sinister nature to your behaviour."