Pair who murdered victim with dog lead given life sentences

Both men appeared at the High Court in Edinburgh. Picture: TSPL
Both men appeared at the High Court in Edinburgh. Picture: TSPL
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Two men who murdered another by punching, kicking and hitting him repeatedly with a dog lead have been jailed for a total of 36 years.

Ryan Gibb, 30, and Cameron Laurie, 31, were given 18 years each for murdering James Chadwick at his home in Holland Street, Aberdeen, at a time between 31 August and 1 September last year.

Both men subjected 38-year-old Mr Chadwick to a sickening physical assault for no reason whatsoever, the High Court in Edinburgh heard.

The pair had spent the day of 31 August 2015 last year drinking before arriving at Mr Chadwick’s property.

Both Gibb and Laurie, who were described in court as being alcohol dependent, then repeatedly punched and kicked Mr Chadwick on the head and body.

The pair then struck their victim with a dog lead before repeatedly stamping on his head and body.

They then tried to destroy evidence linking them to the crime by cleaning Mr Chadwick’s blood from the floors and surfaces of their victim’s property.

The two men, who spent their three-week trial on remand at HMP Grampian, denied having anything to do with the crime.

But yesterday, after having spent 24 hours deliberating their verdict, a jury found 
the two men were guilty of murder.

They were also convicted of a second charge of destroying evidence between 31 August and 9 September 2015 which linked them to the crime in an attempt to defeat the ends of justice.

A third charge which alleged they had both committed a breach of the peace at premises on Holland Street, Aberdeen, on 1 September 2015, had been withdrawn by the Crown during proceedings.

Passing sentence, judge Lord McEwan told the men, who have previous convictions, that given the jury’s decision, he had no other option but to sentence them both to life imprisonment.

He added: “You have been both convicted of a brutal murder of a man in his home. This gentleman had done you no wrong or expressed ill will towards you.

“As far as the evidence has shown, this was a motiveless crime.

“I cannot distinguish between you. Neither of you is of good character. I will therefore set the punishment part of your sentences at 18 years.”