Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Edinburgh grandfather Robert Douglas jailed for jealous rage murder

Robert Douglas
Image caption Robert Douglas had tried to kill himself on three previous occasions

A grandfather who murdered his partner in their Edinburgh home after becoming "delusional" she was having an affair has been jailed for life.

Robert Douglas, 64, was told he would have to serve at least 16 years for the murder of Marie Walker, 61, at their home in Pennywell in August 2018.

After he had killed his wife he attempted to kill himself in a suicide bid.

He was convicted last month by majority verdict.

The High Court in Edinburgh heard how the first offender wrongly believed Ms Walker, who was just 5ft and lightly built, was cheating on him.

Douglas told psychiatrists that a "red mist" descended on him after he confronted Ms Walker.

He grabbed her throat and dragged her out the bed, banging her head off the fireplace of their home.

'Gone truly wrong'

On Wednesday, judge Lord Boyd told Douglas: "It is clear to me that you would rather have died in the suicide attempt than be here facing justice.

"But it is fitting that you are facing justice in a court of law because the deliberate taking of any life is a most heinous crime.

"It is clear that you were motivated by jealousy, believing, wrongly on all the evidence that was before the court that your partner was conducting an affair."

The judge added that Douglas had taken his partner from her family in the most "brutal way" and that the circumstances of her death would weigh heavily upon them.

Image copyright Vic Rodrick
Image caption Marie Walker was subjected to a "horrific level of violence"

Douglas was convicted following a trial at the High Court in Livingston last month.

During proceedings, he admitted killing Marie Walker by compressing her neck and restricting her breathing.

But he denied murdering her by claiming he was suffering from diminished responsibility at the time.

However, jurors concluded he was not suffering from mental impairment, but was instead motivated by malice towards Ms Walker.

On Wednesday, defence solicitor advocate James Keegan QC told the court: "He lived for most of his life in an idyllic relationship with his partner.

"Everything seems to have gone truly wrong in a really short period of time.

"It is a tragedy of great proportion - nothing more can be said about it."

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