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Wednesday, 17 April, 2002, 15:47 GMT 16:47 UK
Youth guilty of Dundee murder
McIntosh and police officers
McIntosh is led out of court to start his sentence
A teenager has been found guilty of murdering a 34-year-old woman on Dundee Law last summer.

Robbie McIntosh, who was 15 at the time, stabbed civil servant Anne Nicoll 29 times in what was described as a frenzied attack.

McIntosh, of Rossie School, Rossie, near Montrose, had denied murdering Miss Nicoll, 34, from Dundee.

He was accused of stabbing Miss Nicoll, 34, with a knife or similar instrument and stamping on her face.

McIntosh lodged a special defence of incrimination blaming a friend, Robbie Soutar, for the crime.

Anne Nicoll
Anne Nicoll: Stabbed 29 times

But on the 11th day of the trial, a jury at the High Court in Forfar took three hours to return a majority verdict of guilty.

Sentencing McIntosh to life imprisonment, Lord Bonomy said: "One witness described her as having been butchered and no better description could be applied to the way in which she met her death.

"It was a dreadful way for anyone to lose their life and for that conduct there is no explanation and I think I can say nothing in the surrounding circumstances that might be considered in mitigation.

"In spite of your youth I consider that the appropriate period to be designated in your case, which I consider to be an extremely serious one, is one of 15 years."

Extensive injuries

Members of the dead woman's family cried in the public gallery as McIntosh's fate was decided.

During the summing-up, the prosecution said there was "not a shred of evidence" to place Mr Soutar at the scene of the crime.

The court heard the victim received knife wounds to the neck, face, head, back, chest, abdomen and left arm during the frenzied attack as she walked her Airedale terrier.

Miss Nicoll's dog Sophie

Miss Nicoll, of Byron Street, Dundee, was left unable to defend herself early in the attack after her voicebox was stabbed, a forensic expert said.

Her body was later found in woodland by her partner, Gordon McKenzie.

The court heard that McIntosh, who had been smoking cannabis, alarmed three strollers on Law Hill with his odd behaviour shortly before the killing.

Bloodstains found on the accused's baseball cap and sock recovered from his home at Dundee's Kenmore Terrace were found to match Miss Nicoll's DNA.

The likelihood of the DNA belonging to someone other than the victim was one in a billion.

BBC Scotland's Alan Grant reports
"The apparently motiveless crime stunned the city"
See also:

04 Apr 02 | Scotland
Murder accused blames friend
03 Apr 02 | Scotland
Witness collapse halts trial
02 Apr 02 | Scotland
Dog 'led man to girlfriend's body'
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