THE family of a teenage soldier allegedly abducted and attacked after leaving his barracks to go on a Tinder date said he is “lucky to be alive”.
Loved ones shared images of horror injuries Cobhan Mclelland, 18, is believed to have suffered at a flat — including severe burns, a slashed face, stab wounds and broken bones.
The brave 3 Rifles squaddie is feared to be scarred for life after he was allegedly ambushed by a man and held against his will at the Edinburgh property for several hours.
It is understood Cobhan, from Doncaster, Yorkshire, left his base at Dreghorn Barracks in the capital on Saturday night after arranging to meet a woman through the dating app.
His sister Laurie Mclelland wrote online: “Cobhan is currently in hospital and is needing specialist care.
“Although we are so lucky he is still alive and here with us today, we’re also in great pain knowing the long road ahead of us.
“Our Son/Grandson/Brother has the kindest soul so we’re devastated to see the pain which he is in.”
Battling Cobhan, who joined the Army aged 16, shared a Facebook snap from his hospital bed on Tuesday and said he was recovering “slowly but surely”.
His message was met by an outpouring of support from family and friends, including military colleagues.
One pal wrote: “Get well soon mate, hope you have a speedy recovery.”
Cops said specialist teams raced to the flat in Gracemount, Edinburgh, at around 6am on Sunday. The incident was under control in under two hours and Cobhan was taken to hospital.
A man aged 19 was later arrested and appeared at the capital’s sheriff court on Monday.
He faces charges including abduction, assault to severe injury, danger of life and attempted murder, and culpable and reckless conduct.
[He] has the kindest soul so we’re devastated to see the pain which he is in
He made no plea and is expected to appear again next week.
Cobhan’s colleagues were told of the alleged attack in a meeting at the barracks on Monday.
A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “Officers were called to an address in Kidlaw Close, Edinburgh, at around 6.05am on Sunday, March 21, following a disturbance within a property.
“Specialist officers attended and the incident was concluded safely at around 8.05am.
“An 18-year-old man was taken to hospital and a second man, aged 19, has been arrested and charged in connection with the incident.”
An MoD spokesman said: “We can confirm there was an incident involving a serviceman and a civilian in the early hours of Sunday morning.
“The serviceman was taken to hospital and police are investigating.”
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The 3 Rifles are a Regular Infantry Battalion of around 650 Riflemen based at the barracks.
They will move to Catterick, North Yorkshire, in 2021 as one of the selected units in the Army’s new Strike Brigades.
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