Woman dies after being found in Edinburgh garden

POLICE have launched an investigation following the death of a woman who was found lying unconscious in a garden.

Police are investigating the death. Picture: TSPL

The woman was spotted by a member of the public in Edinburgh’s Balfron Loan at around 7:30am yesterday.

An ambulance was called to the scene in the Drum Brae area of the city but the woman, named locally as Avril Ramsay, died while being treated by paramedics.

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Last night, police said they were treating the death as “unexplained” and were awaiting the results of a post-mortem examination.

The street remained cordoned off last night while a team of forensics officers, wearing white overalls and masks, examined the house and garden.

Police were also last night continuing to conduct door-to-door inquiries.

Neighbours had to check in and out with police in order to leave or return to their homes.

Residents in the surrounding streets reported seeing a heavy police presence, with around five police vans and 12 officers standing guard in the street, after Ms Ramsay was discovered yesterday.

Shortly before 11am, riot police arrived and removed a man from the home where Ms Ramsay was found.

The man appeared to have cuts and bruises on his head and was put into a police vehicle.

A spokesman for the force said the man was assisting police with their inquiries.

Ryan McGeachy, 17, said he saw riot officers force their way into a house in the street where Ms Ramsay was found.

He said: “I saw an ambulance drive up and leave. There were two riot vans and five police cars and a dog van parked around the corner.

“I saw the police get dressed into their gear and they waited around for a minute or two before a man who looked to be in charge said something and then they all started walking down the street.

“They were carrying one of those big red ram-raiders used for breaking down doors.

“We saw them go through the neighbour’s back door and heard a load of shouting.”

Another resident, who asked not to be named, said police forced their way into a garden before going through the back door into the property.

He said: “The next thing we saw was three policemen and a dog at the front door and then the man was led out in handcuffs.”

Scott Pearce, 19, an art student, who lives near the scene of yesterday’s drama, said: “I woke up and looked out the window and saw police vans, police lines and then the forensics in white suits. It’s shocking.

“You know these bad things happen but you don’t expect it right on your doorstep.”

Lindsay Ball, 54, was visiting her mother who lives near the scene, and said: “I am just gobsmacked by this.

“I got a terrible shock when I saw the police tape and found out there was a woman dead in a garden. I thought it was my mother.”

Last night, Detective Chief Inspector Keith Hardie, in charge of the investigation, said: “We are treating this death as unexplained, pending the results of a post-mortem examination, which will be carried out over the next day or so.

“I would appeal to anyone who saw or heard anything unusual in the area last night [Wednesday] or this morning [Thursday], or who has any other information which could help us, to contact Police Scotland on 101 or through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

“We will not be releasing the identity of the woman until formal identification has taken place, following the completion of the post-mortem, and I would like to thank the local community for their patience, understanding and assistance to our officers.”