Manhunt launched after ‘sweet’ pensioner, 79, dies in attack at her home
Police in Scotland are hunting a man after an elderly woman was attacked and killed in a suspected bungled burglary.
'Sweet and kind' pensioner Margaret Grant died after a 'disturbance' at her home in Edinburgh on Friday evening in what police suspect was a 'targeted' attack.
The 79-year-old churchgoer was raced to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary when the alarm was raised at 6.50pm, but could not be saved.
Officers believe a man, who may have known Margaret by name, went into her home in Restalrig Circus, in Edinburgh's east, and assaulted her, reports the Daily Record.
Detectives believe the suspect intended to steal from her home in the east end of the city.
They say the suspect fled the scene on foot after being 'disturbed'.
Margaret's death is being treated as suspicious and a 'targeted attack,'
Police remain on the scene as enquiries continue to establish exactly how she died.
Friends have paid tribute to 'charitable' Margaret who struggled walking and used a zimmer frame.
She had no family nearby, with siblings living in Australia.
Margaret wore a microphone round her neck and had carers in every day.
One neighbour believes she hadn't left the her flat in around two years due to problems she'd suffered with her legs.
Elaine Burke, 56, a carer who lives in the street, said: “Margaret was a very religious person who went to church every Sunday before she was housebound.
“She spent a lot of time knitting and crocheting and would donate clothes she made to charity.”
Elaine added: “Margaret would often leave her front door open for her home help to come in. The home help came every day and made her meals.
“She couldn’t get on her own and used a zimmer in her house. She’s not been out the house for about two years. She had problems with her legs.
“About a year ago she had a bad fall and was in hospital with a broken arm.
“She lived alone, but has brothers and sisters who live in Australia.
“Margaret had a microphone with a buzzer which went round her neck. If she’d fallen or needed help, she could speak straight to social services.
“That’s probably how she raised the alarm. I heard the police sirens as they arrived on Friday.”
Elaine’s mother, Robina Burke, 81, had known Margaret for about 15 years.
She said: “She was such a sweet and kind lady. You couldn’t have met a nicer person. She’d lived in the street for 30 to 40 years.”
Robina, a retired factory worker, added: “Her upstairs neighbour would always help her. Margaret would knock on the ceiling with a brush if she needed her.”
Officers want to speak to a man spotted was near Margaret’s address at the time whom they believe may be able to assist with their ongoing enquiries.
He’s described as white, about 5ft 6in tall, with combed back dark hair and a Scottish accent. He was wearing dark clothing with a top which possibly had white sleeves.
Forensic specialists were still examining the property yesterday, with a cordon remaining in place.
Detective Chief Inspector Kevin Houliston, from the Major Investigation Team, said: “This was a cowardly and despicable attack on an elderly woman within her home.
"It is imperative anyone with any information about what happened makes contact with us so we can find the man responsible.
“Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Margaret at this difficult time.”
Anyone who may have been in the Restalrig Circus area on Friday evening, or who recognises the description of the man should contact officers as soon as possible on 101, quoting incident number 3175 of January 24.
Information can also be given anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.
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