The mother of assault victim Scott Vineer has started an online petition to “seek justice” for her son.
Helen-Louise Vineer will have to wait until August 28 - the day before she marries - before she finds out what sentence will be handed down to her autistic son’s attacker, Ryan Craig.
Craig (19) from Ashmount Gardens, faced an attempted murder charge, but pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with intent before the trial was due to take place a few weeks ago.
In light of Craig’s guilty plea to the lesser charge, the crown opted not to proceed.
Scott was badly beaten up in Lisburn in 2012 in an unprovoked attack and lay in a river behind a deserted warehouse close to the towpath on the Laganbank Road for over 30 hours before he was found by a police dog-handler.
He was left with horrific brain and head injuries.
Already there are 836 names signed to the online petition, which can be seen on the Justice for Scott Facebook page. However, Helen-Louise is hoping that up to 1,000 people will sign it before it is handed to the judge at Craigavon Crown Court in August.
“If everyone who is on the Justice for Scott site was to put their name to the petition we would have 4,000 names,” she said, “but I would be happy enough with 1,000.
“Anyone who knows Scott will see how this attack has affected everyone. I want justice for my son.
“I just felt that all too often it is the victim who is forgotten about in all of this.
“I hope that this petition will have some sort of effect to hand down the toughest sentence possible.”
She continued, “Scott almost died after the attack which left him with lifelong problems and brain damage.
“He was in hospital for six months and in a coma for three.
“He needed daily aftercare and will need assistance for the rest of his life. The attack was an unprovoked one.
“Scott was left in intensive care and on a ventilator as he couldn’t breathe for himself. He deserves justice.”