Morningside Grove death ‘was robbery gone wrong’

The jury was told that Buczek's DNA was found in the house at Morningside Grove. Picture: TSPL
The jury was told that Buczek's DNA was found in the house at Morningside Grove. Picture: TSPL
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A PENSIONER killed in her own home was the victim of a robbery that went wrong, a murder trial has heard.

Eleanor Whitelaw, 85, died after being stabbed in the neck with a pair of scissors in Morningside Grove last summer.

Prosecutors yesterday urged a jury at the High Court in Glasgow to convict Robert Buczek, 24, of the elderly woman’s murder.

In his closing statement, Alex Prentice QC told the ten men and five women that there was a compelling circumstantial case against Buczek.

The QC said: “I don’t suggest that when Robert Buczek went to the house he intended to kill. He didn’t have a weapon with him. His intention was theft, perhaps targeting a vulnerable elderly person.

“Why was it necessary for him to kill? Perhaps we will never know. But the dead never make good 

Mr Prentice told the jury that Buczek’s DNA was found in the house and he was seen running away by a neighbour who identified him to police.

He said that Buczek also stole and tried to sell stamps from the house, but when he discovered they were worthless he threw them away near where he stayed at Martello Court.

Defence QC Brian McConnachie accused the Crown of focusing on the DNA that suited them and ignoring DNA that didn’t as he summed up his case. He went on: “There was the DNA of an unknown man on the inner right thigh of this 85-year-old woman when she was examined in hospital on July 11, 2014.

“The prosecutor says this could have been a member of medical staff treating her without gloves.”

Mr McConnachie added: “She also had three injuries to an area of her private parts. The learned advocate depute asked a pathologist if these could have been as the result of a fall. What kind of fall would you need to have to cause an 85-year-old woman these injuries?

“Unless your are satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt, the verdict you return should be a verdict that acquits the accused.”

Judge Lord Matthews told jurors that they were under no pressure or time constraints to return a verdict. They are expected to retire on Monday.


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