NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Brian McKandie murder trial: Woman 'saw blood' at cottage

Brian McKandie Image copyright Police Scotland
Image caption Brian McKandie was found dead at his home

A woman has told a murder trial how she saw blood when she looked through a cottage window after sensing something was "not right".

Brian McKandie, 67, was found dead at his home at Badenscoth, near Rothienorman, in March 2016.

Steven Sidebottom, 24, denies murder and robbery at the High Court in Aberdeen.

Witness Kelly Dunbar told the fourth day of the trial she dialled 999 to raise the alarm.

The court has heard Mr McKandie did car repairs at his home.

Ms Dunbar said she and her partner went to Mr McKandie's house on the afternoon of Saturday 12 March 2016 as their car was due its MoT shortly after.

Mr McKandie's garage was unlocked and his radio was on as usual but there was no sign of him.

Ms Dunbar said she also noticed the living room curtains were closed.

'I got a scare'

They went home, but she said she felt there was "something not right", so they went back.

There was no answer at the house door, and after checking the garden she said she looked through a window.

Asked by advocate depute Iain McSporran, prosecuting, what she saw, she said: "Blood".

She said it was on an inside door, the floor, and hall walls.

She added: "I got a scare."

She dialled 999, and the emergency services arrived.

Entry was forced, and Ms Dunbar said she was later told Mr McKandie had passed away.

'A lot of blood'

PC Alasdair MacHardy told the court he was the first police officer on the scene after the alarm was raised.

He said he opened the cottage door with a single kick.

He then began checking rooms for Mr McKandie.

PC MacHardy said he could see a head behind the living room door, and was able to push the door further to get his hand in to check for vital signs but there were none.

He said of the cottage: "There was a lot of blood."

He said his initial opinion was Mr McKandie may have been injured in an accident outside and come into the house.

The officer later had to provide DNA samples and his boots for elimination purposes when it became a criminal inquiry.

The trial, before Lord Arthurson and a jury of eight men and seven women, continues.

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