Glasgow & West Scotland

Men admit killing Blantyre student Reamonn Gormley

Reamonn Gormley
Image caption Reamonn Gormley died after being stabbed in Blantyre

Two men have admitted killing 19-year-old student Reamonn Gormley, who was stabbed during an attempted street robbery in Blantyre, South Lanarkshire.

Daryn Maxwell admitted murdering the teenager, while co-accused Barry Smith pleaded guilty to culpable homicide.

The High Court in Glasgow heard both men were on bail when they killed Mr Gormley on 1 February.

The Glasgow University sports science student died in Hairmyres Hospital shortly after the attack.

Mr Gormley and his friend David McFall were heading back home from the Parkville pub, where they had been watching the Aberdeen v Celtic football game, when the attack happened.

Stab wounds

As the men walked along Glasgow Road at about 23:00, Maxwell jumped in front of Raemonn and demanded his wallet and his mobile phone, while Smith approached Mr McFall.

The court heard that Maxwell, 23, was armed with a knife and 19-year-old Smith had a chisel. Neither weapon has been recovered.

There was a struggle and Maxwell stabbed Mr Gormley three times to the neck and body.

The wounds to the student's neck cut his carotid artery resulting in extensive blood loss within a very short period of time.

After the attack, Mr McFall managed to take his injured friend back to the Parkville to get help.

The court was told of a desperate struggle to stem the bleeding and save the teenager's life, during which he said: "Please don't let me die."

He was taken to Hairmyres Hospital in East Kilbride but died a short time later.

A post-mortem examination concluded that the injury to Mr Gormley's neck was not survivable.

The court also heard that after the attack Maxwell told a friend: "I think I've murdered somebody."

Both he and Smith were on bail at the time of the killing.

A long list of Maxwell's previous convictions, dating back to May 2003, was read out in court.

The offences included at least two serious assaults, possession of an offensive weapon, wilful fire-raising, breach of the peace and a number of breach of bail offences.

At the time of the attack, Maxwell was on bail having been convicted and sentenced to 32 months for stabbing someone three times with a knife.

Image caption More than 1,000 people attended a memorial walk for Mr Gormley

He appealed against the length of sentence imposed and was bailed pending a hearing.

The court also heard that Smith had several previous convictions, including assault, theft and breach of probation.

At the time of the murder, he was the subject of two bail orders for alleged offences which have yet to come to trial.

Det Ch Insp Robbie Allan, who was the senior investigating officer for Strathclyde Police, said Mr Gormley's murder had been "one of the most testing" of his career.

He said: "Reamonn was someone who had so much to offer in life. He had a very bright future ahead of him.

"On the night he was attacked, he had just enjoyed a night out with friends and was walking home in the community he was brought up in and where he felt safe.

"Daryn Maxwell and Barry Smith, motivated by nothing more than sheer greed, viciously attacked Reamonn and his friend with complete disregard for the consequences."

'Beloved son'

Det Ch Insp Allan added: "I have met with Reamonn's family who are understandably shattered by the loss of their beloved son.

"Throughout this tragic and very difficult time, they have displayed real dignity and strength, and the only comfort I could give them was that we would do everything we could to identify those responsible for Reamonn's death.

"Today marks the end of an intense and emotional investigation and thankfully the people responsible for Reamonn's death have been brought to justice."

Janet Cameron, area procurator fiscal for Lanarkshire, said Mr Gormley's murder had caused "widespread outrage and revulsion" in the local community and had a "profound impact" on residents of Lanarkshire.

She added: "This was an entirely random and unprovoked attack on two innocent members of the public, neither of whom was known to the two accused.

"The impact of knife crime on our society cannot be underestimated, and again we have a young life lost and a family devastated by the effects of knife crime."

Mr Gormley's family described him as "a wonderful son and a loving and caring boy".

Days after his murder, more than 1,000 people took part in a memorial walk in Blantyre, in tribute to the teenager.

The crowds stretched for more than a mile and took more than an hour to walk round the town.

The walk started and ended at the Parkville, where Mr Gormley had been on the night he was murdered.

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