Highlands & Islands

Pensioner jailed for murdering woman in Inverness

Michael Taylor Image copyright Police Scotland
Image caption Police said Ms MacKay made "great efforts" to defend herself against her attacker Taylor

A pensioner has been given a life sentence for the murder of a woman in her home in Inverness.

Michael Taylor, 72, had denied killing 60-year-old Elizabeth MacKay, who was also known as Muir, in March last year.

The High Court in Edinburgh heard earlier how prosecutors were unable to discover why he punched and struck her with a pot or pan in an attack.

Taylor's trial heard that police found his fingerprints and "large amounts" of his DNA at the scene.

Detectives also discovered that Taylor had admitted assaulting Ms MacKay to two people following the crime.

Taylor will serve a minimum of 16 years in jail.

Following the sentencing, Nicky Patrick, procurator fiscal for homicide and major crime, said: "Michael Taylor carried out a brutal attack which left a woman dead in her own home and her murder was a great shock to the local community.

"Despite denying the crime, the commitment of police and prosecutors ensured that he did not escape justice for his appalling actions"

Image copyright Police Scotland
Image caption Elizabeth MacKay was killed in her home last year

The court heard that police were unable to find out why Taylor, whose wife died 20 years ago, attacked Ms MacKay.

Police investigating the crime believed that he attacked her at some time between 28 March and 31 March last year.

Det Ch Insp Keith Hardie of Police Scotland's Major Investigation Team and who led the inquiry, welcomed the life sentence.

He said: "Although it will never change what happened, I hope this outcome gives her family and friends some comfort in knowing that he will be behind bars for many years to come.

"This was an extensive enquiry which used the full resources of Police Scotland to identify and trace Taylor as he attempted to evade capture.

"Working alongside officers within the Highland and Islands Division, the Major Investigation Team carried out a wealth of forensic work and extensive proactive policing assisted by invaluable assistance and information from members of the public."

He added: "Once again I would like to thank those members of public who provided information which helped in reaching this outcome today."

"Our thoughts continue to be with Elizabeth's family and friends at this time."

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