Man charged after pensioner dies and two others injured in woods

By Lucinda Cameron, PA Scotland

A man has been charged after a pensioner died and two people were seriously injured following an incident at woods in Moray.

Police were called to reports three people had been attacked while they were walking at Birkenhill Woods near New Elgin at around 9am on Monday.

They were all taken to Dr Gray’s Hospital in Elgin where Frank Kinnis, 83, later died.

Frank Kinnis Police Scotland/PA)

A man and woman, both aged 70, suffered serious head injuries and are both in a stable condition.

Police said a 35-year-old man has been charged in connection with the death.

He is due to appear at Elgin Sheriff Court on Wednesday.

The family of Mr Kinnis paid tribute to him in a statement issued through police.

It read: “We are mourning the loss of our beloved husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather.

“He was a doting, warm-hearted and unfailingly dependable presence in each of our lives.

“There will also be fond memories of him among the farming and bowls communities in Elgin, where he was well known and liked.

“We will fondly remember him as he was in life, and ask everyone who knew him to make certain that it is these memories of him that endure.

“While the police continue the investigation, we kindly ask that our privacy be respected.”

Police said they will be increasing patrols in the area and appealed for information about the incident.

Superintendent Kate Stephen said: “A 35-year-old man has been arrested in connection with these incidents and has now been charged, therefore we are unable to speculate or answer questions regarding the circumstances.

“Given how incredibly rare and unusual this incident is for such a well-used and loved area, officers will be carrying out additional patrols here and providing an increased presence over the coming days – please approach any our officers if you have information, or even if you just want to speak to someone about your concerns.

“‎ I am acutely aware of the impact this incident has had on the local community and I include in that my own officers who not only work in the area but many of whom also live in the communities.

“Moray prides itself on being one of the safest places to live, which makes this incident all the more tragic.”