The brother of a mechanic brutally murdered in his own home has made an emotional appeal to help track down his killer.
Brian McKandie was found dead after he was attacked with a heavy weapon in his remote bungalow at Badenscoth, near Rothienorman, two weeks ago.
Yesterday, as his brother urged anyone with information to “look into their conscience” and come forward, police revealed details of the handyman’s final movements for the first time.
They released a CCTV footage of Mr McKandie at his local bank in Turriff on March 11 – the last known image of him alive.
On the way home from the bank, he popped into a garage which had links to his business and then spoken with a friend before heading to his bungalow.
Less 24 hours later, the 67-year-old was found dead.
At a press conference in Aberdeen yesterday, Mr McKandie’s older brother William said he could not understand why anyone would target him.
The 75-year-old said: “It’s been almost two weeks since Brian has died and it’s just been a terrible shock, especially as police believe that he was attacked.
“My sister and I are now left with questions about why someone would want to hurt him, what did they want?
“He was a 67-year-old man who lived alone, who worked hard as a self-employed mechanic and was friendly to anyone who spoke to him. How could someone do this to him?
“Somebody somewhere must know what happened to Brian. I would ask them to look to their conscience and call the police. We are finding this whole situation really hard to come to terms with.
“We have lost our brother and we just want to know what happened and why.”
Police have previously said they could not rule out the possibility that the pensioner knew his killer, as there had so far been nothing to suggest the attacker forced entry into the cottage.
They are trying to trace four men seen outside the property at various points throughout March 11.
Two of them, thought to be in their 20s and 30s, were spotted outside the cottage between 5pm and 6pm. The others – one of whom is described as being about 50 and the other only as “younger” were seen between 1pm and 2pm, standing next to a burgundy or maroon estate car.
DCI Iain Smith, who is leading the investigation, believes the men could help detectives establish their timeline further.
The team has not yet ruled out if Mr McKandie’s death had been part of a robbery, as the self-employed mechanic was known to keep cash in his house.
DCI Smith said: “We continue with a forensic examination of the home address trying to establish a motive for this crime is still our main line of investigation.
“Certainly a robbery is one motive alongside a number of others.
“He was self employed, a handyman, and was well known in the local community – but he didn’t advertise, and that’s crucial, he only got jobs through word of mouth.
“Because he didn’t advertise, he didn’t have his number out there, so he did get a lot of home calls, so there doesn’t seem to be anything unusual about these men spotted on the Friday.
“We’re looking a lot of options right now, such as if it was a robbery, if someone had fallen out with him as a result of business dealings, if they had fallen out as a result of a friendship, if there’s something hidden in his background that we’re unclear on, we just don’t know at the moment.
“He could even have been targeted randomly by a travelling criminal in the area and things just got out of hand – there are a whole host of options here.”
The detective urged anyone with information – or who saw anything out of the ordinary – to come forward for the sake of Mr McKandie’s grieving family.
“Whoever has carried out this crime will have arrived back to their home address in a dishevelled state and must have been in an agitated frame of mind after a crime like that,” he said.
“Somebody out there knows something but whether Mr Mckandie’s attacker was known to him or not I can’t say.
“Brian’s brother and sister are obviously desperate for us to catch whoever has done this to their brother so they can get the answers they want and start to try to come to terms with what has happened.
“For their sake I would ask again for anyone with information about this incident to come forward.”