Murder trial jurors have been told alleged killer Callum Davidson could have been within “one to two metres” of Steven Donaldson for spots of his blood to transfer to a T-shirt being worn by the accused.
The day after Edinburgh High Court heard blood spot DNA found on Davidson’s garment was, at odds of more than a billion to one, that of the 27-year-old Arbroath oil worker, a forensic expert was cross-examined on the report she compiled at Kinnordy Loch car park, where the deceased was found in the early hours of June 7 last year.
Davidson, Steven Dickie and Tasmin Glass all deny murdering Mr Donaldson.
Questioned by Ian Duguid QC, counsel for Dickie, forensic scientist Sarah Milne, of the Scottish Police Authority based in Dundee, was asked about the likely proximity of Davidson to Mr Donaldson for blood to transfer to him.
She said blood spots were measured to determine how close a person was to a force of dispersal and in terms of the size of spotting in this case she would estimate 1-2m from the source.
Mr Duguid also asked the witness about forensic tests carried out on his client’s Suzuki motorcycle, his bike leathers, crash helmet and gloves.
She confirmed that no trace of Mr Donaldson’s DNA was found on any of those items.
Advocate Jonathan Crowe, for Davidson, put it to the witness that if Dickie had taken a shower then any DNA traces would have been removed, and Ms Milne agreed that was the case.
The trial also previously heard Mr Donaldson’s blood DNA was found on the handle of a baseball bat and the grips of a mountain bike which also contained Davidson’s DNA.
The advocate suggested: “Mr Davidson could have got blood on his hands by working in the area in the car park where Mr Donaldson’s blood was, without going near Mr Donaldson?”
The witness agreed that was another possible explanation for the transfer.
“There are lots of imponderables, lots of unknowns?” he asked.
“Yes, there is,” said the witness.
The trial continues.
The charge faced by the accused Steven Dickie, Callum Davidson and Tasmin Glass alleges that between June 6 and 7 2018 at the Peter Pan playpark, Kirriemuir and Loch of Kinnordy nature reserve car park, they assaulted Mr Donaldson and arranged to meet him with the intention of assaulting him, and once there repeatedly struck him on the head and body with unknown instruments whereby he was incapacitated, and thereafter took him to Loch of Kinnordy where they repeatedly struck him on the head and body with a knife and baseball bat or similar instruments, repeatedly struck him on the head and neck with an unknown heavy bladed instrument and set fire to him and his motor vehicle, registered S73 VED, and murdered him.
Dickie and Davidson face four other charges including one of behaving in a threatening manner towards two men between January 2014 and June 2018 by making threats, following them on foot and in a motor vehicle, presenting weapons and acting in a threatening manner.
They are also charged with putting a kitten in a bag in Main Street, Lochore, Fife on an occasion between February 1 and May 31 2017, swinging the bag about and punching and kicking the kitten; behaving in a threatening manner towards a man in St Malcolm’s Wynd, Kirriemuir and elsewhere between December 1 2017 and February 28 2018 by following him on foot and in a vehicle, and threatening him with weapons.
Both also deny following and staring at a woman and kicking her car in Kirriemuir between August 1 2017 and April 31 2018.
Davidson faces a further charge of assaulting a man between June 1 2017 and December 31 2017 at a house in Glengate, Kirriemuir by pushing him to the floor and threatening to punch him.
Dickie is also accused of assaulting a woman at the Ogilvy Arms pub in Kirriemuir between February 1 and 28 last year by seizing her by the wrist and neck and threatening her with violence.