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Stefan Sutherland case needs police failures probe

Police investigations are poor

Many Highlanders are anxious by the inability of police officers in the north of Scotland to investigate serious crime. There is a clear pattern of either incompetence or laziness which suggests a badly broken chain of command in the north. Former police officers talk fondly of the old days but then add that the foul-ups last 25 or so years have not been good. It wasn’t then and it isn’t now.

police
Kevin McLeod of Wick. Police apologised for failing to investigate for criminality.

It was in 1997 that Kevin McLeod, a 24-year-old electrician met his untimely end when he was found drowned in Wick Harbour. The body had suspicious injuries. A series of silly cock-ups by officers who should have known better meant that probe went nowhere. Northern Consabulary was instructed by the Crown Office to treat it as a murder. They never got round to doing that. Appalling.

As Kevin’s father Hugh said a few years ago: “The police say they found no criminality. But they missed the golden hours and they didn’t look for criminality. They weren’t going to find it if they didn’t look. Kevin’s clothes were in the sergeant’s office for three days and then disappeared. In a murder inquiry, they should have been bagged, tagged and kept.”

No one was disciplined at Wick police because hopeless senior cops had not given them instructions. These responsible cops for these appalling failures are now retired and sitting at home on fat pensions while Kevin’s family still mourn and still have to campaign for justice.

police
Unsolved – Stefan Sutherland. Police claim to have investigated for criminality but questions remain.

And now Stefan Sutherland’s case

And in the last few years, we had the case of Stefan Sutherland, 25, of Lybster, also in Caithness. It is clear there has been some mysterious constabulary foot-dragging in that tragedy too. How Police Scotland, new name but perhaps the same couldn’t-care-less attitude, can say they could find no criminality is unconsionable. There has been a review – by Police Scotland, of course, marking their own homework – in which they decided there was no evidence of wrongdoing.

There was a prime suspect – a man with a very dodgy record. The last time Stefan was seen was going into his house. It has emerged Stefan’s DNA was later found in the suspect’s property. After a major review, police failed to interview the suspect because, said Police Scotland, there was insufficient evidence. His family say the findings show these blnkered cops were only interested in Stefan’s Facebook pages. There is a place for digital investigations but this was one where they should have got off their bottoms and followed the material leads.

Will anything ever happen?

Now that the prime suspect has died, the family of Stefan fear the chiefs of Police Scotland will continue doing nothing and leave them forever wondering what happened.

One Scottish newspaper has thankfully helped his family keep up awareness of Stefan’s case and thereby the sheer cack-handedness of police in the north. The coverage of his case by the Daily Record is a wonderful example of campaigning journalism. Insiders says Police Scotland bosses don’t agree. Good.

One serious question remains. Why are there no decent Scottish politicians campaigning for an independent investigation? There are other suspected cases but these two in the north are two of the worst cases of the force’s ineptitude. Is every politician in Holyrood and Westminster too scared to speak out? Why is that?

Honest ex-cops tell us there are always some bad apples in uniform. In other parts of the country, quite a number have been jailed recently for serious wrongdoing. In many ways, the consequences of just failing to do their job right is just as serious for victims and their families.

Can you help the police?

If you have any relevant information on either of these two cases, you should contact Police Scotland on 101. You may also call anonymously to Crimestoppers UK on 0800 555111.

Alternatively, if you do not wish to speak to a person, you could call the 24-hour Impartial Investigations hotline on 0800 887 0111. It is voicemail only. No human will answer and you can speak for up to 10 minutes. We will pass on any information received to the family concerned.

Or call us for a chat. Just go to the Contact Us page.

Impartial Investigations
23 January 2022

Wanted – Warren Day in the Western Isles?

Wanted – Warren Day – in the Western Isles?

Wanted - Warren Day
Wanted – Warren Day. He may have changed his name now.

Have you seen this man, possibly in the Western Isles of Scotland? He is Warren Day who is wanted for serious assault on a female partner. He speaks with a Liverpool accent but he may not be using that name now.

On the 20th April 2020 in north Wales, Warren Day viciously assaulted his vulnerable partner causing serious head injuries including loss of several teeth and damage to mouth, jaw and nose.

Subsequently, Day fled the Wales area and is still actively avoiding apprehension. He has links to criminality throughout Scotland and the north west of England and has a long history of violent and drug offences. Now, police have reason to believe he is living on a Scottish island.

In the past, for example, he has used the names Jonny, Jay, and Jason White.

Tattooed on his wrist is the name Jodie

Warren Day, who is 30 to 35 years old, has tried to change his appearance since he has been on the run. For instance, he has a tattoo of “JODIE” on his left wrist [approx 30mm in size]. He speaks with a Liverpool accent.

More details about the wanted man are on the Crimestoppers website.

Meanwhile, police inquiries have suggested he is currently in the Hebrides, which are also known as the Western Isles of Scotland.

Most importantly, if you do spot someone you think is Warren Day, do not approach him. Dial 101 or contact Police Scotland here. Alternatively, you can contact us here or to 0800 887 0111 (our 24-hour voicemail at Impartial Investigations) and we will relay your messsage to police.

What happened to Johnny Connelly at Speir’s Wharf, Glasgow?

Johnny Connelly at Speir’s Wharf

John Connelly, 28, also known as Johnny, was discovered in the water at Speirs Wharf in Port Dundas, Glasgow, on Monday, July 22, 2019. That was a week after he was reported missing.

He had failed to return home after spending a day out with his pal in the city centre on Monday, July 15.

John Connolly
Johnny’s family need to know the truth

Police who have been investigating what happened that evening think he was involved an altercation at the Garscube Road underpass in Cowcaddens around 10.20pm. He had multiple injuries to his head and body.

John, from Cathay Street in Milton and who was known to many as Johnny, was last seen wearing a black Adidas hooded top, with white stripes down the sleeves. He also had on black jogging trousers and royal blue coloured Nike trainers.

Johnny Connelly’s family are devastated

“John’s family are still understandably devastated by his death,” said Detective Inspector John Morrison of Maryhill CID. “It is made all the harder by not knowing what happened to him. We know he was in the city with his pal. But they had separated when heading home for the night.
“Around 10 pm John is seen walking alone in Buchanan Street past Buchanan Galleries. He then went past the bus station and on to Dundasvale Court. Then he went into the underpass at Garscube Road leading to Speirs Wharf in the Cowcaddens area around 10.20.”

Garscube Road at Speirs Wharf is a popular route. It is used by runners, dog walkers and skateboarders.

Anyone with information is asked to call CID officers at Maryhill Police Station via 101. Please quote incident number 3452 of 22 July 2019.

NOTE:   If you have information but would rather stay anonymous and not speak to a human, call Impartial Investigations voicemail on 0800 887 0111 day or night.

Missing Persons

Impartial Investigations  Missing Persons in Scotland will feature here regularly

Missing persons are a part of life in Scotland, sadly. Impartial Investigations is dedicated to doing what it can to help Scottish families suffering the trauma of having a missing person in suspicious or even unexplained circumstances. We will investigate, where necessary, and we will make public appeals for help.

If you know what happened to a missing person, we would like to hear from you. Their families need to know what happened to their loved ones. Whether you were involved in the person’s disappearance or not, there comes a time when you realise that pretending there is nothing you can do is just not good enough. You need to be able to sleep at night too.

Why should you call us? Impartial just wants the information. Remember, we are not the police. We do not want to detain anyone and take them in for questioning. You may call us day or night and we will not ask you questions.

You have information about a Scottish missing person? Please call now:

Freephone:  0800 832 1678

24-hour voicemail only. No human answer.

No one will ever answer. It’s voicemail only. You may leave your contact details or you may give us the information anonymously. It’s your choice. But please, do it … 

Or email:  tipoff@mm.st

You should also call CrimeStoppers UK anonymously if crime is involved.

If you are a missing person, you should ring either the police on 101, or 999 if it is an emergency. Otherwise, call the charity Missing People on 116 000 for the best advice.

Prefer to discuss the matter with one of our investigators? See here.

Last updated: 3 September 2020

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