South Scotland

Ecclefechan murder trial: Pair deny killing Kevin MacKay

Two men have gone on trial accused of murdering a father-of-two in a Dumfriesshire village in August.

Andrew Brown, 23, and Dean Melnyk, 20, deny murdering Kevin MacKay by punching, kicking and knifing him at Peacock Place in Ecclefechan.

It is also alleged that they tried to set fire to items of furniture in an attempt to burn Mr MacKay's body.

Co-accused Jennifer Melnyk, 60, also denied a charge of attempting to pervert the course of justice.

She is alleged to have burned bloodstained clothing and instructed two people to provide false information to the police.

Advocate depute Shanti Maguire, prosecuting, showed the jury at the High Court in Glasgow photographs taken by scenes of crime examiner Nicola Brunt.

Ms Maguire warned the jury beforehand that the photographs might be disturbing.

One of the images showed the bloodstained living room of 3 Peacock Place, Ecclefechan, with Mr MacKay's body lying on the floor.

He was covered in blood and there was blood on the sofa and doors and walls.

Mr MacKay's ex-wife Melissa, 36, who had two children with him, told the court that he was a drug dealer and revealed that their marriage ended for that reason.

Fake tablets

She said they broke up in 2008 and at the time of his death he was staying at a friend's home in Peacock Place.

Ms MacKay told defence QC Ronnie Watson, representing Mr Brown, that her ex-husband was involved with drugs.

She added that he was selling cannabis, cocaine and sometimes ecstasy to friends.

When questioned she also confirmed that she had known Mr MacKay was a drug dealer during their marriage.

Ms MacKay was then asked if she knew of 19-year-old Jamie Abba who died after taking fake ecstasy tablets in the summer of 2013 and she said she did.

She denied ever telling the police that Mr MacKay had sold Mr Abba - nicknamed Jabba - the drug.

However, she said she knew of rumours that had swept through the south of Scotland village alleging that he had.

The trial before Lord Armstrong continues.

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