A MAN who beat a pensioner to death in his own home was today jailed for life for murder.
Keiryn Nisbet, 22, who launched a savage attack on 67-year-old Robert Simpson - known as Ronnie - was jailed for a minimum of 18 years before being eligible for parole.
Sentencing Nisbet judge Norman Ritchie QC said: “This was a horrific and sustained attack on an old man in his own home. You are a danger to the public.”
Nisbet entered the flat of frail, slightly-built Mr Simpson, who was a complete stranger, and repeatedly punched, kicked and stamped on his head and body.
He also struck Mr Simpson on the head with a blunt instrument and dragged him across the floor of his house in Mayfield Drive, Armadale, West Lothian, on 6 October 2012.
Mr Simpson received a number of blows to his head, but died as a result of injuries to his body which included fractured ribs.
Judge Ritchie added: “For no known reason you assaulted Mr Simpson. This brutal and senseless attack left Mr Simpson lying dying in the living room of his flat.”
Mr Simpson was in the habit of leaving his front door unlocked and it is thought Nisbet - who had been drinking for 10 hours and taken heroin and cocaine - may have gone inside thinking it was a former girlfriend’s home.
Once inside he subjected Mr Simpson, who was sitting watching television, to a brutal and violent attack.
The police were called, but when they arrived they found Mr Simpson’s home in darkness and, seeing no signs of a disturbance, left.
During that time Nisbet was in the flat with Mr Simpson.
Judge Ritchie told Nisbet: “You did not get help for him. He either died in front of you or you left him to die alone.”
Nisbet showed no remorse and later tried to get into a nightclub before heading to a house party.
When questioned by police denied ever being in Mr Simpson’s home, but was snared by forensic evidence as palm and fingerprints were found in the flat.
Nisbet sent a message to a friend on Facebook saying he had attacked a man but could not fully remember what he had done.
But after being convicted Nisbet, who was out on bail at the time, continues to insist he is innocent.
Detective Chief Inspector Robert Cowper, from Police Scotland, said: “Mr Simpson was a well-known local and the attack within his own home was a callous act, for which Keiryn Nisbet has never offered any explanation.”