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‘What you did has destroyed your family’: Retired inspector jailed for life after murdering wife in Aberdeen home

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A retired police inspector who murdered his wife at their home in Aberdeen has been locked up for at least 15 years.

Keith Farquharson choked Alice Farquharson last August 29 moments after she asked if he still loved her.

Mrs Farquharson had stood by the 60 year-old despite his serial adultery and once being demoted at work for sending a sleazy poem to a female officer.

Farquharson was today jailed for life after being convicted last month of murdering the 56 year-old in the bedroom of their home in Aberdeen.

He previously had a plea to the reduced charge of culpable homicide rejected.

Sentencing him at the High Court in Glasgow, Lady Stacey told him: “You deprived your wife of what would have been many more years of her life.

“You deprived your two daughters, son and your wife’s relatives of her society.

“You had been a police officer for many years. It is distressing a man who held such a position should behave like this and commit such a serious crime.

“What you did has destroyed your family.”

The couple’s three grown-up children – chemical engineer Joanna, teacher Sarah and son Kerr, who is in the RAF – were not in court for sentencing.

The pair had been married for 33 years, but Farquharson told jurors he’d had a number of affairs.

He had flings with two women in 2018 and previously had a relationship with another woman which ended in 2008, when his wife, a teaching assistant, found out.

That affair was rekindled last year after he apparently met the woman by chance in a pub.

His wife was found to have made internet searches for the woman and Farquharson admitted his wife did not “trust” him.

On the morning of the murder, Farquharson got up to start his shift as a school bus driver, having retired from the police in 2010.

As she lay in bed, his wife asked him: “Do you love me?”. After he groaned, she slapped him.

During his trial, the ex-traffic officer insisted they struggled and he put his hand over her mouth to stop her screaming.

Farquharson went on: “It was as if she started to choke. I knew something was wrong. When I let go she just rolled off the bed.”

He made a 999 call but medics were unable to save Mrs Farquharson. She was found to have suffered “mechanical asphyxia”.

Farquharson later claimed to relatives he discovered her stricken in the bedroom after hearing a noise while in the shower.

But he told the trial: “I continued with the lie because I was in a state of shock. I felt guilty and did not want my family to know.”

Detectives initially treated the death as “non suspicious” but Inspector Christopher Kerr – one of the officers at the Farquharsons’ home that morning – pushed for further inquiries.

Farquharson repeatedly sobbed in the witness box during his trial as he insisted the death was “totally accidental”.

A pathologist, however, concluded his wife’s neck had been compressed and bruises on her face were consistent with gripping.

Prosecutors stated she had been “fighting for her life” that morning.

Farquharson’s QC Ian Duguid yesterday said the victim impact statements from the couple’s children had been “moving”.

“These are a clear indication of how Mrs Farquharson was the centre of her children’s lives,” he said.

“They state the family unit has been shattered by these events.

“It is an unbelievable end to a relationship of 33 years.”

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