Raymond Bell appeared in Glasgow High Court today, Wednesday 26th January, where he was convicted of the murder of David Black.
He was also sentenced to life in prison, with a minimum sentence of 18 years.
Bell had previously been charged and convicted of the attempted murder of David Black in 2015, and had served nine years for this crime.
His attack on Mr. Black, which occurred on November 2, 2014, followed a “trivial” dispute that resulted in Mr. Bell and another man appearing to like the same woman.
The court heard that Bell repeatedly hit Black with a table leg and stomped on him before fleeing, leaving the 35-year-old man stranded in his apartment for days.
Bell then fled to Blackpool, before finally being caught by the police a fortnight later.
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On November 5, 2014, three days after the attack, Mr. Black was found critically injured by council officers at a property on Lochaber Drive, in the Springhall area of Rutherglen. He was taken to the Glasgow Royal Infirmary with serious injuries. He had sustained brain injuries and also had a pressure ulcer, after being unable to move for a long period of time.
Mr Black lived with his injuries for five years, requiring 24-hour care, before passing away at a hospice in East Kilbride, South Lanarkshire on October 27, 2019.
He had suffered from a form of pneumonia after a traumatic brain injury.
In an unusual move, Bell was dragged back to the dock on a murder charge more than seven years after the attack.
He again denied the charge, but was convicted after a trial at Glasgow High Court.
Lord Arthurson sentenced him to life in prison and ordered him to serve a minimum of 18 years from November 2014, when Bell was first placed on remand.
The judge said: “You abandoned David Black until council officers found him on the kitchen floor.
“He fled to Blackpool on November 6, 2014, where he was in due course arrested.”
He added: “His actions were not only wrong and selfish, but cruel and cowardly.”
Following the guilty verdict, Lord Arthurson agreed to vacate Bell’s original conviction for attempted murder, as both stemmed from the same incident.
The judge also paid tribute to Mr. Black’s family for their “tremendous” efforts in caring for him after he was released from hospital in 2015.
Detective Inspector Alan McAlpine commented on the conviction, saying: “We welcome this conviction today. It is highly unusual for someone to be convicted in these circumstances and therefore this has been a complex investigation.
“David Black endured a brutal and violent attack, which left him in need of 24-hour care, ultimately resulting in his death.
“We hope this outcome will be of some comfort to David’s family and friends, who have also suffered at the hands of Bell’s actions.”
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.