Glasgow & West Scotland

Christopher Shone guilty of murdering Mary Craig in Lochwinnoch

Mary Craig Image copyright Other
Image caption Mary Craig was fatally stabbed by Christopher Shone at the home they shared in Lochwinnoch

A 55-year-old man has been convicted of murdering his partner at their home in Lochwinnoch, Renfrewshire.

Christopher Shone stabbed Mary Craig, following an argument about old home videos, which showed her late husband.

Shone denied the murder on 26 May, and claimed the 43-year-old had died while trying to stop him self-harming.

A jury convicted him following a six-day trial at the High Court in Glasgow. Shone faces a mandatory life term when he is sentenced next month.

The court heard how the couple had been together for eight years in a relationship that was described as "up and down".

'In a low'

Shone had gone with Ms Craig to her sister's home on the morning of 26 May.

It was while there an old home video was put on which showed Ms Craig with her ex-husband.

Shone claimed he soon "went into a low" as it had been difficult "seeing them together".

Image copyright Spindrift
Image caption Christopher Shone faces a mandatory life term after being convicted of murdering his partner Mary Craig

The couple later argued when Ms Craig returned home from her karate class.

She questioned why he was upset as her former husband had since passed away.

A neighbour of the pair told the jury how she chatted with Ms Craig that night.

Amanda Brown said the victim was "usually cheery and bubbly", but this time appeared to be "quiet and looked fed up".

'Sick of it'

The witness recalled: "She told me that he was drunk - she said she could not be bothered with it any more and was sick of it.

"I thought she was going to leave him...separate."

Instead Ms Craig was killed later that night when Shone plunged a kitchen knife into her chest.

He then put the murder weapon back into a knife block and sought no assistance for his dying partner.

Image caption The murder took place at the couple's home in Ewing Road, Lochwinnoch

It was Ms Craig's 13-year-old son who dialled 999.

The jury was played the emergency call where the distressed teenager repeatedly asks for help for his mother.

Shone was detained at his house and later apparently broke down when police told him Ms Craig had died.

He wailed in front of officers: "I cannot believe it. It was just an argument...she is not dead, she is not dead."

Single wound

The court heard Ms Craig died from a single stab wound to the chest that went through her heart.

Giving evidence, Shone claimed the death was a tragic accident after Ms Craig tried to stop him self harming.

He said he had gone into the kitchen in the midst of a row and reached for a knife to cut himself.

Shone said Ms Craig got hold of his arm, but he tried to "wrestle" the blade away from her.

Asked what happened, Shone wept: "Her arm slipped off mine. My arm came went into her.

"I just thought that it was a small cut."

Shone insisted he "felt terrible" at what happened and that he would never deliberately stab someone.

But prosecutor Steven Borthwick described Shone's claims as a "pack of lies" and that he had stabbed Ms Craig "right to the hilt" of the knife.

Shone repeatedly shook his head after being convicted.

Judge Johanna Johnston QC deferred sentencing until next month.

She told Shone: "You have been convicted of the murder of Mary Craig. In convicting you, the jury has rejected your evidence that this was an accident."

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