Suzanne’s shopping trip with accused captured on camera

MISSING bookkeeper Suzanne Pilley and the man accused of murdering her went shopping together less than 48 hours before she disappeared, a court has heard.

A jury viewed CCTV footage from the Scotmid store in Saughtonhall Drive, near Ms Pilley’s home, which showed her buying groceries with David Gilroy.

The shopping trip took place after Ms Pilley cancelled a dinner date that evening with Mark Brooks, a man she had met over an internet dating site.

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The High Court in Edinburgh was also shown security camera footage of Ms Pilley making her final journey to work on May 4, 2010.

Footage was displayed of a “person” walking into Thistle Street, where the bookkeeper’s office was based, at around 8.53am. Forensic image experts concluded that it was Ms Pilley.

Detective Sergeant Stuart Houston gave evidence on the fifth day of the trial yesterday about his work collecting CCTV footage as part of Operation Mica – the police code name given to the investigation into Ms Pilley’s disappearance.

The court saw footage captured on a camera at the Scotmid a short distance from Ms Pilley’s Whitson Road flat at around 6.20pm on May 2, 2010.

It showed Ms Pilley and Gilroy, who were involved in a “turbulent” on/off relationship according to witnesses, at a check-out buying groceries. Jury members saw her pack items into a bag whilst Gilroy paid for them.

The court had earlier heard that on May 1 and May 3, 2010, Ms Pilley went on dates with Mr Brooks, 41, after meeting him online the previous month.

Ms Pilley cancelled a planned meal at Mr Brooks’ home in Newington after sending a text message that read: “I’m sorry Mark. It’s complicated just now. I have a visitor. I can’t come out tonight. Sorry x.”

A text message sent the following day from Ms Pilley to Mr Brooks read: “God oh mighty. I had such a rubbish night. David appeared as I was leavin. I asked him to go and he wouldn’t. I was arguing with him, askin him to leave. I cried when I sent that text to you cos I really wanted to come down and see you. At least if anything else I managed to drum thru to David that it is over and to leave me alone.”

After seeing the shop footage, the jury saw images from CCTV cameras taken on the morning of May 4, 2010 from buses that Ms Pilley took from her home to Princes Street.

The jury then saw an image of Suzanne getting off a bus at Jenners department store at 8.49am, from where she then walked up South St David Street into a Sainsbury’s.

After leaving the store, she was seen continuing to walk up South St David Street.

The court was then shown an image of a “person” walking into Thistle Street at approximately 8.53am. DS Houston said he was unable to establish whether it was Ms Pilley because the camera was too far away.

Gilroy, 49, of Silverknowes Brae, has denied murdering Ms Pilley on May 4, 2010, at Thistle Street, or elsewhere in Scotland. The trial continues on Monday.