Glasgow & West Scotland

Witness denies giving description of Ross Sherlock gunman

A witness at an attempted murder trial has denied giving police a description of the gunman.

Vincent Cassidy was walking with Ross Sherlock, having collected his children from primary school, when a gunman opened fire in Bishopbriggs.

Mr Cassidy said he froze and did not see the gunman's face.

He was giving evidence at the trial of William Burns and Alexander Porter who both deny attempting to murder Mr Sherlock on 24 September 2015.

The jury at the High Court in Glasgow heard that Mr Cassidy and Mr Sherlock had collected their children from St Helen's Primary and were walking along chatting when the attack happened.

A man wearing fluorescent yellow clothing appeared, produced a gun and fired at Mr Sherlock who ran off.

The jury has previously heard that one of the shots fractured Mr Sherlock's arm.

'Did not say those words'

Mr Cassidy was asked by prosecutor Richard Goddard: "Does your police statement say; 'The one thing I noticed was that he didn't fancy chasing after Ross. He only took a few steps and then stopped and fired'?"

He replied: "Yes. I said that."

He did not agree, however, that he had given police a description of the gunman's face, his height and build.

When asked about those parts of his statement Mr Cassidy replied: "I've signed the statement but I did not say these words. I didn't see the face at all."

When asked if he could identify the gunman Mr Cassidy replied: "I didn't see the man's face. I only saw the back of him.'

He added: "I kind of froze and then got my kids out of the way as quickly as possible."

The trial later heard evidence that police found three cartridges and a bullet near the scene.

Det Sgt Allan MacInnes said that two cartridges were found in the roadway at Dornoch Place and the third in a driveway.

The bullet was found at the junction of Pentland Drive with Ronaldsay Drive.

The jury was also told that about 10 minutes after the shooting a silver-coloured Volkwagen Golf was found on fire at Wood Lane, Bishopbriggs.

IT engineer John McDermott said that he saw smoke billowing in the air and when he went to investigate discovered a car ablaze.

Mr McDermott told prosecutor Richard Goddard: "I could see smoke billowing out. I went to see what it was. I could see there was a car on fire. I think it was a VW Golf. Glass was popping and flames were coming out."

Firefighter Martin White told the jury that the blaze had been deliberately started in the passenger compartment after petrol had been poured in.

Special defence

William Burns, 56, and Alexander Porter, 48, both from Paisley, deny attempting to murder Ross Sherlock by repeatedly discharging a handgun at him on 24 September, 2015, at Dornoch Place and Ronaldsay Drive, Bishopbriggs.

They also deny assaulting crime journalist Russell Findlay to the danger of his life at his home in the west end of Glasgow on 23 December, 2015 by throwing sulphuric acid in his face.

The prosecution alleges that these alleged offences were aggravated by a connection with serious organised crime.

Mr Burns has lodged a special defence of alibi in relation to the attempted murder of Mr Sherlock claimed he was working at Guinea Enviro in Maryhill, Glasgow, at the time.

He has also lodged a special defence incriminating another man, whose whereabouts are unknown, for the shooting.

The trial before judge Lord Matthews continues.

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