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Drug-fuelled killer who murdered north-east dad to appeal his 19-year jail sentence

Police in Cuminestown following the death of Anthony McGladrigan. 
Picture by Jim Irvine
Police in Cuminestown following the death of Anthony McGladrigan. Picture by Jim Irvine

A drug-fuelled killer who was locked up for life after murdering an Aberdeenshire dad is to appeal his sentence.

Liam Hay stabbed Anthony McGladrigan nine times after approaching his victim’s home in Cuminestown last June.

The 20-year-old was described as being in a “delusional” state and carried out the brutal attack while he was on a five-day drug binge.

That morning he had been woken up by a friend, but grabbed a baseball bat, threatened him then chased after him.

Anthony McGladrigan

Hay’s friend banged on Mr McGladrigan’s door for help, explained his situation and was afforded refuge inside.

But a barefoot Hay followed and tried to enter the property as well, before using the bat to smash some glass and force his way in.

He then grabbed a knife from his victim’s home and stabbed Mr McGladrigan.

Hay waited in the property, still clutching the murder weapon, until the police arrived.

He later pled guilty to murder and his QC, Ian Duguid, told the court: “His perception of what took place around him that night is entirely divorced from reality.”

In January, Hay appeared at the High Court in Glasgow where he was sentenced to at least 19 years behind bars.

Issuing her judgement, Lady Stacey described the crime as “shocking”.

She said: “The only sentence that I can by law impose is a life sentence and I do so now.

“I have to set a punishment part. It does not set the time which you must serve. Rather it sets the time that must elapse before your release can be considered by others who will have to decide if it is safe to release you.

“In doing so I take into account your youth and the fact that you pled guilty at a preliminary hearing and so there was no trial.”

Lady Stacey added: “What you did makes no sense to anyone.

“Your actions were, I am told, caused by your being very intoxicated by drugs and alcohol.

“That of course is no excuse.”

New court documents show that Hay is due to appeal this sentence.

His case will be heard by three judges at a hearing of the High Court of Justiciary next Thursday morning.

If successful, Hay’s 19-year prison sentence could be reduced.

Mr McGladrigan, a father-of-two, worked as a quality service manager at the Sandman Signature Hotel in Aberdeen.

His family released a statement thanking people for the “outpouring of love, support and kind words” following Hay’s sentencing.

They said: “There are not enough words to capture just how amazing Anthony was, he was the best of men: honest and true, his passion for life knew no bounds – as a family we are so proud of him.

“He would do anything for you and would put his needs aside to help anyone.

“It is beyond tragic that this led to his death.”

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