Trio behind Edinburgh’s Magdalene Drive murder sentenced to at least 54 years behind bars
A WOMAN, her younger brother and a friend have been jailed for life for murdering her former boyfriend.
Ashleigh Wallace,27, her sibling Shaun,19, and Patrick Herbert,37, took 49-year-old Stephen Grant’s life in July 2018.
The High Court in Edinburgh heard how the trio killed Stephen at a flat in the city’s Magdalene Drive.
The trio stabbed Stephen 10 times, inflicting wounds on his head, body and legs before repeatedly striking him with “objects” which remain unknown to police.
Neighbours heard Ashleigh shout ‘kill him, kill him, kill him” during the attack. Herbert and Shaun Wallace removed Mr Grant’s body from the flat and then dumped him outside on a back green for him to die.
Herbert then obtained his victim’s mobile phone and used it to take a series of selfie photographs of himself. He then went to sell Valium to drug users in Edinburgh city centre.
However, the trio were later arrested after police found DNA evidence which linked them to the crime scene.
On Thursday, judge Lady Carmichael told the trio they’d have to spend at least 18 years in custody they’d become eligible for parole.
She spoke moments after friends of Mr Grant shouted from the public benches: “Hope you all f*****g die!”, “yes! Get in there” and “murdering b******s”.
Passing sentence, Lady Carmichael said: “In the days leading up to his death, Mr Grant expressed fear for his own safety.
“All three of you were there when he arrived at the flat shortly after 6pm on July 8. Within 20 minutes of arriving, he had received fatal injuries which had been inflicted on him at your hands.
“It is clear that this was a very violent attack on him - in the course of this attack, one of 10 stab wounds penetrated his heart and another one penetrated his liver.”
The three accused, all from the Edinburgh area, denied murdering Mr Grant on July 8 last year. They were convicted last month but sentence had been deferred for the court to obtain reports on their characters.
During proceedings, the court heard how Mr Grant used to be Ashleigh’s partner. But the court heard how the pair split because Mr Grant allegedly had a drink problem.
The jury also heard how before he died, a court had imposed an order on Mr Grant from contacting Ashleigh because he allegedly subjected her to physical attacks.
Investigators weren’t able to establish the reasons why Mr Grant was attacked, but the trio preyed on him on July 8 2018.
Prosecutors claimed that before the attack, Herbert was heard shouting ‘wakey, wakey Stevie where’s the money?”
The trio then subjected their victim to a horrifying attack. Mr Grant was left to die from a series of debilitating wounds - his attackers fled and travelled to other locations in Edinburgh.
Herbert left to sell drugs in Edinburgh city centre. He later met up with the Wallaces and returned to the scene.
Investigators arrested the trio shortly afterwards and found incriminating forensic evidence which linked them to the crime. They found Mr Grant’s blood on clothing belonging to the accused and DNA which linked them to the attack.
Following his detention, Herbert told police officers that he didn’t see the problem with returning to the crime scene.
Speaking about Mr Grant, he said: “I thought he would just have got up and left because he had got a kicking.”
Herbert also claimed that when he took the selfies, he did not know the victim was dying.
When Shaun Wallace was detained, he initially denied to police that he knew Mr Grant. But then said: “I do know him. But I just didn’t see him that day.”
Police uncovered enough evidence to show that he was lying and that he was an active participant in Mr Grant’s death.
The court also heard that Ashleigh Wallace had a deodorant can and shouted ‘kill him, kill him, kill him”.
But Herbert claimed to police officers “I didn’t hear her shout it.”
The jurors also heard that Ashleigh then wrote a letter to her mum Kirsteen Kinmond about what had happened from prison.
She told her mum that Shaun had nothing to do with the murder and that she “couldn’t live” knowing that her brother could be jailed for something he didn’t do.
In the letter, Ashleigh said: “I know I couldn’t live with the fact that Shaun could be getting the jail because of me and my really bad temper.
“Shaun’s done a lot of things in his life but he never done anything this time that deserves him going to the jail.
“There’s one last thing I would like you to do for me. If you can tell Shaun’s lawyer, I was the one who do (CORR) it and I scared Shaun so much he thought I would do it to him.”
She also said that Mr Grant physically abused her.
She wrote: “Stevie just took the total p*** out of me. Stevie battered me so many times that I lost count.
“He was only out the jail two days and he battered me again.”
Following conviction last month, prosecution lawyer Graeme Jessop told Lady Carmichael that Herbert had 15 previous convictions for violence and dishonesty.
Mr Jessop also said that Shaun Wallace had one previous conviction and that his sister had five previous convictions.
On Thursday, Herbert’s advocate Ian Duguid QC told the court that his client had spent his life battling a drink and drug problem.
Shaun Wallace’s lawyer Gareth Jones said his client maintained he was innocent of any wrong doing.
Ashleigh Wallace’s counsel Craig Findlater said his client was a victim of domestic abuse.
Mr Findlater added: “She is someone who is effectively a damaged individual.”
However, Lady Carmichael told the trio that she had no other option but to send them to prison.