A heroin addict who bludgeoned her elderly neighbour to death with a rolling pin has been jailed for at least 21 years for the “callous and cruel” murder.
Sandra Weir attacked defenceless Mary Logie in the pensioner’s own home in Leven, Fife, last January.
The 82-year-old grandmother, also known as Rae, suffered 31 injuries to her head and neck – including multiple skull fractures - and sustained defensive wounds as she tried to fend off her attacker.
Weir then left her victim lying seriously injured but alive for hours before returning to deliver the fatal blows, prosecutors believe.
In the months prior to the killing, Weir, 41, had befriended the pensioner but was in fact siphoning off significant sums of cash from her account to fund her drug habit.
She was convicted of murder by a jury at the High Court in Edinburgh last month.
Judge Michael O’Grady QC, who described the crime as “breathtakingly wicked”, handed the killer an automatic life term when she returned to the court for sentencing.
Ordering her to spend a minimum of 21 years behind bars, he told Weir: “You have clearly been a troubled young woman and it may be that some of your problems have not been of your own making.”
But he added: “In my view, nothing can diminish the callous and cruel and utterly heartless nature of this crime. It is beyond any meaningful mitigation.”
A family member, believed to be Mrs Logie’s son Ronald, said afterwards: “Justice was served but we would have wanted more.”
Churchgoer Mrs Logie was found in a pool of blood in the living-room of her flat in Green Gates on 5 January 2016.
She had just returned from spending Christmas with family in England and had planned to visit a friend in hospital that day. She never turned up.
Weir denied murder and claimed she was elsewhere at the time – a position she maintains to this day. The motive for the killing may never be fully known but police suspect it was fuelled by Weir’s greed.
Weir became close to Mrs Logie and acted as her unofficial carer, but she had been a drug addict since her 20s and had racked up debts.
Described by detectives as a “callous and uncaring individual”, she regularly exploited Mrs Logie for financial gain.
Detective Chief Inspector Keith Hardie, of Police Scotland’s major investigation team, said after the verdict: “The level of violence inflicted upon Mary, coupled with the prolonged period of bullying and intimidation, demonstrated Weir’s complete disregard for the wellbeing of her victim.
“This was a very, very brutal and horrific attack committed by a despicable individual.”