Glasgow & West Scotland

Man who stabbed neighbour found guilty of murder

Jamie Walsh Image copyright Police Scotland
Image caption Jamie Walsh died after being stabbed near his home in Greenock's Wren Road

A man who claimed he killed his neighbour in an act of self defence is facing a life sentence after being convicted of murder.

Thomas Sellar, 38, stabbed Jamie Walsh, 23, during a confrontation in Greenock, Inverclyde, on 10 September 2015.

Sellar said he feared for his life but a jury heard Mr Walsh was unarmed, and a claim that Sellar stabbed himself afterwards in a bid to evade justice.

At the High Court in Edinburgh, sentence on Sellar was deferred.

The trial had heard that he and Mr Walsh both lived at 123 Wren Road in Greenock.

Noise dispute

Mr Walsh had recently moved into a flat below Sellar, which was being rented by the victim's friend.

In the days leading up to the murder, Sellar had objected to "noise" which was coming from the downstairs flat.

On the night of the incident, Sellar said he had gone to the downstairs flat to try to convince the residents to keep the noise down.

He claimed that a group of youths objected to this and had "battered" him and chased him back to his flat.

Sellar claimed he felt he had no other option but to grab a knife in a bid to protect himself.

He said that in the ensuing fight, the knife came into contact with Mr Walsh, who died shortly afterwards.

He said: "They chased me down. I couldn't breathe. I never intended to kill him. I never intended for anything like this to happen."

Stabbing claim

Christopher Walsh told jurors that his brother did nothing wrong and that Sellar had attacked him.

He told the court that following the incident, Sellar claimed that Mr Walsh had stabbed him first and showed off a wound which he claimed he had suffered during the fight.

He said his brother did not have a knife and when asked why Sellar claimed to have been stabbed by his brother, answered: "He was trying to get a defence."

Sellar denied stabbing himself and maintained he was acting in self defence.

However, a jury refused to believe his claims and returned a guilty verdict to a murder charge.

Sellar was returned to custody and faces a mandatory life sentence.

Following the verdict, it emerged that Sellar, formerly of Greenock, had six previous convictions for offences involving knives.

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