Glasgow & West Scotland

James Sharkey jailed for killing Christopher Graham in Cambuslang

A man has been jailed for nine years for killing his cousin by stabbing him on the buttock.

Christopher Graham, 22, was left seriously injured following a disturbance at his Cambuslang flat last October.

His cousin James Sharkey was found guilty of culpable homicide after a trial last month. He had originally been charged with murder.

Sharkey was sentenced on Wednesday at the High Court in Aberdeen.

The court heard an altercation had taken place between Mr Graham and Sharkey in the kitchen of the Morven Road flat on the day of his death.

Defence lawyer Gary Allan QC said the two cousins had lived together and there was proper "family affection" existing between them.

He said his client, who had been drinking, had accepted that he was responsible for the death of his cousin.

Sharkey, 29, had offered to plead guilty to culpable homicide at an earlier stage but this was rejected by the Crown.

'Reeling in shock'

Mr Allan said: "The trial proceeded on the basis that the accused provided instructions to me that the action which he carried out was an action not carried out by murderous intent but an action motivated by the desire to protect himself as to what he perceived to be a potentially lethal attack on him."

The defence lawyer said Mr Graham's death had been caused by a single blow in his buttock, not normally an area associated with a fatal wound.

But the weapon, described in the indictment as a knife or similar weapon, cut an artery.

Mr Allan said his client was "extremely remorseful" for his actions.

He said: "The effect upon him is such he's still reeling in shock from what happened.

"This was a family matter and the family has been torn apart by the actions."

Mr Allan said Sharkey had been extremely close to the deceased's family.

He added: "He's going to go to prison, he knows that. He's very sorry for what he did.

"He recognises he has to pay a penalty for the criminal act.

"Having killed his cousin is something he will have to live with for the rest of his life."

Lady Dorrian said she had taken into account what Mr Allan had said on his client's behalf but stated that the jury had rejected his claim of self defence.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites