Mother tells of relief after son’s killer is found guilty
● Teenager convicted of culpable homicide
The grieving mother of tragic footballer Shaun Woodburn has spoken of her relief at his killer being found guilty but said nothing would bring back her son.
Denise Syme spoke after the 17-year-old, who had been charged with Mr Woodburn’s murder, was convicted of the lesser charge of culpable homicide following a trial at the High Court in Dunfermline.
The teenager, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was a 16-year-old schoolboy when he delivered the fatal blow outside a Leith pub at the end of a violent Hogmanay rampage across the capital.
Mrs Syme, who found the 17-day trial too upsetting to attend, said: “I’m just glad it’s all over as reliving Shaun’s death all over again has been a nightmare for all of the family.
“I’m glad he has been found guilty but nothing is going to bring my lovely boy back.”
The detective who led the investigation into the death said last night that his thoughts were with Mr Woodburn’s family and told how he hoped the verdict would give them some sort of closure. The jury took four hours to find the youth guilty of killing Mr Woodburn by punching him, causing him to fall to the ground and hit his head on the pavement.
Former Bonnyrigg Rose star Mr Woodburn, 30, suffered massive head injuries in the fall, during a mass brawl outside Gladstones bar in the early hours of New Year’s Day.
Mr Woodburn, who lived in Clermiston with his partner, Nicole, and their young daughter, was rushed to the city’s Royal Infirmary but died a few hours later. The court heard how the youth had been drinking and causing trouble on the streets of Edinburgh as crowds celebrated Hogmanay. Before the bells, he punched student Hugh Cullen, 22, who had wished him “Happy New Year” – breaking multiple bones in his face.
He then continued to attack random strangers along with friend Mohammed Zakariyah. The youth admitted assaulting five other people in the streets of Edinburgh that night. He has been in custody since the incident and will be sentenced at the High Court in Glasgow on 8 November. Zakariyah, 19, who admitted two separate assaults, will also be sentenced then.
A third man, Marcus Brown, 18, was acquitted of the seven charges he faced.