Bus link in Stirling pensioner death probe

John Gillespie John Gillespie died six days after the attack

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Posters featuring an 88-year-old man who died after being attacked in an underpass in Stirling are being distributed on buses across the area.

John Gillespie died six days after being found injured at the underpass at Lover's Walk in the city on 19 April.

Police believe Mr Gillespie and possibly his attacker may have been on buses in Stirling that day.

In particular, they are investigating if the suspect took a bus to Callander, where another pensioner was attacked.

In a statement, Central Scotland Police said it was trying to piece together the actions of Mr Gillespie in the hours before he was targeted.

They believe he took a bus from Cornton to Stirling before being assaulted in the Riverside area at about 1450 BST.

Exactly two weeks after the incident, posters featuring Mr Gillespie are being used on routes to Cornton, Stirling and Callander in an effort to jog passengers' memories.

'Opportunistic incident'

Det Insp Ronnie Isles, who is leading the investigation, said: "We're taking the step of issuing posters and speaking to people who travelled on buses in these areas at specific times on the day of the crime.

"A few hours after the assault on Mr Gillespie, a woman was robbed in Callander - we can't yet rule out the possibility that these incidents may be linked, and that the suspect may have taken the bus into Callander.

"In addition to this, we're still keen to gather information on Mr Gillespie's movements before the incident and to speak to anyone who can assist with our inquiry."

The suspect is described as being between 21 and 40 years old, about 6ft tall with a slim build and short, dark hair.

At the time of the attack, he was wearing a dark blue jumper and dark trousers.

Ch Insp Bob Beaton, sub area commander for Stirling, said crimes where the elderly were specifically targeted were "very rare" in the Stirling area.

He added: "This appears to have been an opportunistic incident and officers are doing all they can to trace the person responsible and provide reassurance to the community."

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