Cousins jailed over murder of Christopher McCallum McGee in South Lanarkshire

Two cousins caught on CCTV carrying out a "senseless and violent" murder have been handed life sentences.

David McMahon, 41, and William McMahon, 47, left Christopher McCallum McGee unconscious in a garden after attacking him outside a house.

A court heard David McMahon struck Mr McGee with a beer bottle across his right cheek with such force that it knocked him out.

As Mr McGee lay on the ground, William McMahon kicked him twice on the head.

The attack was stopped by Mr McGee's friends and neighbours.

Judge Lord Young said: "Neither of you showed any compassion or concern for him as he lay there."

Mr McGee, 36, died in hospital three days after the fatal assault in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire, on 5 November 2021.

Both men had denied murder but were convicted following a trial at the High Court in Glasgow.

Lord Young said: "Immediately after the attack, David McMahon said words which suggested that he had been waiting for an opportunity to attack Mr McGee but the evidence did not explore that matter further.

"With some hesitation, I will sentence you on the basis that this was not a pre-planned assault but was the result of an alcohol influenced disagreement."

The pair were handed mandatory life sentences on Tuesday.

The judge told William McMahon: "The evidence was that you were the source of the original aggression that evening. You were drunk and spoiling for a fight.

"You delivered the kick which most likely triggered the impact brain apnoea."

Lord Young said David McMahon rendering Mr McGee unconscious made the victim "far more vulnerable".

He added: "I have decided that by escalating the violence that night with the use of a weapon, you bear a somewhat greater responsibility than your co-accused."

David McMahon, who had a worse criminal record than his cousin, will have to spend at least 16 years in prison before being eligible for parole, while William McMahon was sentenced to 15 years and six months behind bars.

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The judge acknowledged that both men had expressed remorse over Mr McGee's death.

Lord Young said: "I have read the victim impact statements from Mr McGee's mother and his partner which make clear to me how much Mr McGee's death has affected their lives and those who loved him.

"During his life, Mr McGee provided love and practical support for many family members, not least his own children, and they have to come to terms with losing him to such a senseless and violent attack."

Following the court case, Detective Chief Inspector Hannah Edward said the McMahons were "facing the consequences of their actions".

She added: "I hope that this sentence brings some degree of closure to the family and friends of Christopher and our thoughts remain with them at this difficult time."