Family of Shaun Woodburn ‘hopeful’ in campaign for justice

Shaun Woodburn was killed when out celebrating the New Year with friends.
Shaun Woodburn was killed when out celebrating the New Year with friends.

The family of Shaun Woodburn have said they are “tentatively hopeful” following a meeting with the Crown Office yesterday in their campaign for justice for their son.

It was revealed in the meeting that Lord Advocate James Woolfe can order prosecutors to appeal the sentence of Shaun’s killer.

READ MORE: Plans to honour Shaun Woodburn with lasting charity legacy

Following the meeting, Shaun’s dad Kevin said he was ‘tentatively hopeful’ that the campaign seeking justice for their son will be successful.

It is understood that prosecutors are currently carrying out a review of the four-year-sentence and deciding whether to appeal it for being “unduly lenient”.

Shaun was killed in an incident outside Gladstone’s bar in Leith last Hogmanay after celebrating with friends.

Kevin Woodburn told the Daily Record: “Advocate Depute Tim Niven-Smith was candid with us as he’s been throughout the whole process.

“They asked us to give our views on the sentence and we told him what we thought. He listened to us and while he couldn’t discuss the sentence from the Crown’s point of view, it at least afforded us an opportunity to put across what we wanted to say.

“I wanted him to know that a four-year sentence wasn’t acceptable.

“What does it say about us as people if we don’t speak out? The fact that almost 70,000 people have signed the petition suggests that most people do not accept that justice has been done in this case.”

He added: “This is also about other innocent people whose lives have been ruined – not only by the crimes committed, but by soft justice.

“A one punch killing is one punch too many. I also wanted to make the point that at 16 in Scotland you can get married, you can join the Army and you can vote so you’re classed as an adult and mature enough to make those decisions.

“But in the eyes of the law, at 16 when you kill someone you’re treated like a child.

READ MORE: Mother of Shaun Woodburn brands killer’s sentence ‘an insult to her family’

“Age was a factor in his sentence but his age wasn’t a factor when he took the decision to punch and kick my son and kill him.

“He should have been tried like an adult and we feel he’s been protected by the law much more than the victims in this case have been.”

“I firmly believe in the interests of Scottish justice, an appeal must be made to challenge this sentence.

“I won’t stop fighting for Shaun. All we can do for him is ensure his story is heard and justice is served.”

A petition for an appeal set up by Shaun’s dad, Kevin, has been signed by more than 65,000 and attracted support from across the political spectrum.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has also written to the Woodburn family offering her “sincere condolences” for their loss.