Glasgow & West Scotland

Machete gang threatened to behead doctor during home raid

Declan McCluskey (left) and Michael McInnes Image copyright Spindrift
Image caption Declan McCluskey (left) and Michael McInnes will be sentenced next month

A doctor has told how masked raiders threatened to chop off his head during a robbery at his home.

John Davidson said the gang stormed his detached house in East Kilbride, South Lanarkshire, in April last year.

The consultant anaesthetist was slashed with a machete while his wife and son were also threatened.

The robbers stole the family's £70,000 Range Rover as well as a haul of items including a £4,000 diamond ring and a £2,000 Rolex watch.

Details of the crime emerged as one of the robbers was convicted at the High Court in Glasgow. Declan McCluskey, 23, of Hamilton, was found guilty of assault and robbery after a trial.

Michael McInnes, 28, of Newarthill, had earlier admitted the same charge.

The pair face lengthy jail terms when they are sentenced next month.

'Chaos'

The court heard how, in the early hours of 14 April last year, the Davidsons' CCTV cameras caught the five-strong gang prowling the grounds of the detached house.

The family then became aware of a "loud crash" as they forced their way inside.

One of the robbers had a machete and was demanding to know where a safe was.

Dr Davidson, who works at Glasgow's Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, recalled "chaos" in his home.

The 57-year-old was wounded on the leg with the machete and also threatened with a golf club.

He said the house was "turned on its head" as windows were damaged, drawers ransacked and phones ripped out of sockets.

His wife Caroline, a teacher, was confronted by a robber with a scarf over his face.

She told prosecutor Shirley McKenna: "I asked him not to take my Rolex watch as my dad bought it for me 30 years ago - but I just wanted to remain alive."

Beheading threat

The teacher was shoved into a bedroom and told to grab a pillow case.

Mrs Davidson said: "I thought he was going to put it over my head and he would slit my throat."

But, the armed raider instead used the pillow case to bag loot from the house.

Jurors heard how Dr Davidson thought about challenging the raiders. "I was threatened with the beheading, but there was a ski pole and I was almost at the stage of reaching for that and throwing it," he said.

"However, they then said: 'Got to go'. They just left, but stated: 'If you call police then we are coming back for you'.

"I honestly thought they would. I have never been as scared in my life."

Mrs Davidson told the trial how she had pleaded with one of the robbers before they fled.

She recalled: "I turned to him and said: 'Have you got a mum?'.

"He said: 'Everybody has got a mum'

'I replied: 'Would yours like to see me how I am now?'"

'Traumatic and horrifying'

Dr Davidson, who was with his 27-year-old son Gavin, during the raid described finding his terrified wife.

He told the court: "Caroline was huddled in the kitchen - she was a wreck. My wife was absolutely sodden with tears.

"She had actually thought we were dead upstairs."

The gang took the Range Rover as well as a Volkswagen Golf but they struggled to drive the vehicles away

The 4x4 ended up hitting a wall while one of the robbers could not get the other car started.

Other goods taken were a £1,000 wedding ring, a £1,200 designer Mulberry bag, as well as an iPad and phones.

McInnes and McCluskey were later held by police.

McCluskey's DNA was found in the stolen cars - but he told jurors he had no idea how it got there.

Both already had a history of violence. McInnes was previously jailed for attempted murder while McCluskey has been locked up for assault.

McCluskey's last sentence was in 2016, and he was ordered to be supervised when he was freed.

The pair were remanded in custody pending sentencing next month.

Judge Johanna Johnston QC said: "This was a traumatic and horrifying attack in this home.

"What happened to this family was all done in pursuit of items stolen from them."

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