Pair ‘confessed to drugs stash murder’

Lee Duncan. Picture: Comp
Lee Duncan. Picture: Comp
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TWO friends allegedly made separate confessions to being involved in the murder of Lee Duncan, a court has heard.

John Dowling and Kevin Grieve, who are not on trial for killing the 31-year-old, made the alleged admissions in the weeks after his death.

The High Court in Edinburgh yesterday heard from Tammy Bryce, who informed police that Dowling told her he was part of a group that robbed Mr Duncan of drugs in his Tollcross flat before murdering him.

Grieve later told the jury that claims from his former girlfriend, Lynne Cowan, over his confessed involvement were false.

Gary Parker is on trial accused of the murder of Mr Duncan, his friend and neighbour, in Lauriston Place, Tollcross on February 24, 2011. The 45-year-old denies the charges and has lodged papers blaming two other men for the murder.

Bryce, 27, an inmate at Saughton Prison, was giving evidence about a conversation she claimed to have had with Dowling in a hostel near Edinburgh Castle.

The court heard that Bryce gave a statement to detectives that she knew Mr Duncan and bought drugs from him.

She told police: “I asked him [Dowling] if he knew who was responsible. He said it was him and others, but did not say who else was there. I asked why they did it. He said they asked Lee for ‘tick’ on valium and heroin and Lee had refused and they had then attacked him.”

Bryce told officers that Dowling said the group stole Mr Duncan’s drug stash.

During the police interview, she added: “I think John said a bat or a pole had been used when Lee was attacked. He never said who had used it to hit Lee. John said he was easy about what happened to Lee as there were that many people.”

Dowling has given evidence at the trial when he denied making the comments to Bryce.

In court yesterday, unemployed Grieve, 44, denied knowing Mr Duncan despite giving a police statement describing him as a “pal”.

The court heard that his former partner, Ms Cowan, had given a statement about a gathering of street drinkers in a Dalry park where people had questioned Grieve about Mr Duncan’s killing.

Afterwards, Cowan alleged that Grieve told her: “Aye, it was me that killed Lee but I’m no telling any of them that.”

In court Grieve denied he made the comment.

Grieve said he could not remember selling Mr Duncan a yellow Timberland jacket for £20 on February 24, 2011, the day before the victim’s body was found, while in the Meadows with Dowling.

The trial continues.