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Would-be robber jailed over veteran's death

A MAN who killed an 88-year-old war hero in a robbery bid has been jailed for seven years.

James Duguid attacked John Gillespie as the pensioner – who was registered blind – took a stroll in Stirling in April last year. Duguid confronted the former Navy sailor and said: "Gie's your wallet."

Mr Gillespie tried to fight back, but the attacker grabbed his walking stick and struck him with it. The pensioner – mentioned in dispatches for his conduct in the Second World War – suffered a broken hip and died six days later in hospital.

At the High Court in Glasgow yesterday, Lady Scott told Duguid that for a man of 51 his conduct was "all the more inexplicable". Mr Gillespie's family later said people should have the unassailable right to walk the streets without fear.

In a statement, they added: "Our family express our gratitude to the countless members of the Stirling community for their kindness and support over the loss of our father and revered Son of the Rock."

The pensioner was attacked in a pedestrian underpass as he went for a walk to look at daffodils. He died in hospital on his 64th wedding anniversary.

Duguid, of Raploch, Stirling, was convicted of culpable homicide and disposing of the walking stick.

He had denied being involved in the killing.

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