Jury hears of Russell’s last moments alive

Russell "Smeegs" Robertson died in Forth and Clyde Canal on May 29, 2016
Russell "Smeegs" Robertson died in Forth and Clyde Canal on May 29, 2016
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The murder trial into the death of a Falkirk man began in Glasgow this week with witnesses hearing details about his last moments alive.

On Tuesday a lifeguard told jurors at the High Court he saw two men throw another man over a bridge into a canal and then walk away.

Cameron Binnie (19) was giving evidence at the trial of Mark Munro (31), from Denny, and James Robertson (27), from Pitlochry, who deny murdering 27-year-old Russell “Smeegs” Robertson by pushing him over railings at Bainsford Bridge, Falkirk, into the Forth and Clyde Canal on May 29, last year.

It is alleged they repeatedly punched Russell on the hands and prised his fingers from the bridge railing.

Witness Mr Binnie told prosecutor Alan Cameron he and some friends were waiting at a bus stop near the bridge after a night out at the nearby Warehouse nightclub.

He said it was around 3.20am and they were texting friends and taxi firms trying to get a lift home when he saw three men who he thought were “mucking about” on the bridge.

Mr Binnie said: “It looked like play fighting. One of the men had another man in a headlock. I thought it was pals just mucking about.”

The lifeguard said he changed his mind when he saw the two men grab the other man’s legs.

He added: “I just saw them lifting his legs. It looked to me that they were trying to put him over into the water.

“I saw them either side of him trying to get his hands off the railing. He was over the barrier and hanging on the railing.”

Mr Binnie said the man went into the water and the two other men walked away towards Falkirk town centre.

He said: “I ran up to see what had happened with my friend Liam Sutherland. We checked the water to see if there was any sign of movement – there wasn’t.”

Mr Binnie told the court he was unable to identify any of the men he saw that night.

Hairdresser Jade Anderson (23) told the court she had gone to the Warehouse nightclub with a group of friends including Russell (27). She said Russell “went towards the canal” after he left the premises.

The jury was told Munro and Robertson were seen standing on either side of the bridge around 3.20am by Lindsay Crowe (23) who had spoken to them earlier in the nightclub.

The trial before judge Lady Carmichael continues.