A murder accused has admitted lying to police in the Steven Donaldson investigation because he didn’t want to be labelled a “grass” by getting his best pal into trouble.
Steven Dickie said he had not been truthful during the Dundee Police HQ interview, which stretched over more than five hours and led to him and co-accused Callum Davidson and Tasmin Glass being charged with the killing of the 27-year-old Arbroath oil worker.
Dickie had claimed a plan had been hatched between Glass and Davidson to give Mr Donaldson a “roughing up” for “hassling” Glass, his ex-girlfriend, over insurance money for a written-off car.
Yesterday, on his second day of evidence at the High Court in Edinburgh, Dickie also admitted he became concerned about what might have happened at Kinnordy Loch – where he knew Davidson had gone looking for a broken baseball bat in the early hours of June 7 last year – after hearing a body and burned out car had been discovered there.
But Dickie told the 15th day of the trial: “I was sort of asking snippets, but not too much, the less I knew the better.”
The 24-year-old tyre-fitter told his senior counsel, Ian Duguid: “There were bits [in the interview] I was telling the truth and then I stopped myself from speaking.
“I didn’t want to be labelled a grass.”
He also accepted he had not been truthful in the police interview when he told police there were no other cars in the car park at Kirrie Hill on the night of June 6.
Yesterday he told the court he saw Glass’s Vauxhall Corsa and Donaldson’s white BMW sitting side by side in the area, with the driver’s windows facing each other.
He claimed Glass sped off in her vehicle when Davidson “dived” through the window of Mr Donaldson’s white BMW.
Dickie told the court he then went back to Davidson’s house in Marywell Brae before his co-accused returned some time later.
He said Davidson had “scrubbed his hands in the kitchen sink” then had a cigarette, before going back to Kinnordy Loch.
His QC put to him earlier evidence from Davidson’s girlfriend, Claire Ogston, in which she had told police it was Davidson who was doing Dickie a favour by going to the loch to look for the broken bat.
Dickie replied: “No”.
He said Davidson returned around 2am, took all his clothes off at the door and then went to bed.
Dickie went to work the following morning and passed a police roadblock at the end of the B951 leading to the Angus nature reserve.
When asked about hearing that a body and burned out car had been found, he told his QC: “It did start going through my mind what he’s done.
“Initially I thought it was maybe a car accident and then it clicked on that’s where Callum had went to look for the bat and I thought it might be a bit serious.”
Mr Duguid asked: “Did you think he had killed him?”
Dickie replied: “No.”
All three deny murdering Mr Donaldson and the trial continues.
Charges faced by Glass, Dickie and Davidson
Tasmin Glass, 20, Steven Dickie, and Callum Davidson, both 24, all from Kirriemuir, face a charge of murdering Mr Donaldson at Loch of Kinnordy between June 6 and 7.
It is alleged they assaulted him at Kirriemuir’s Peter Pan playpark having arranged to meet him there, repeatedly striking him with weapons before taking him to Loch of Kinnordy where they repeatedly struck him with a knife and baseball bat or similar and a heavy, bladed weapon and set fire to him and his car.
Dickie and Davidson face a number of other charges including two of threatening men by following them and presenting weapons on dates between 2014 and last year.
They are also accused of staring at a woman and kicking her car in the town of Kirriemuir between August 1 2017 and April 31 last year.
Davidson faces a further charge of assaulting a man between June 1 2017 and December 31 2017 at a house in Glengate, Kirriemuir.
Dickie is accused of assaulting a woman at the Ogilvy Arms pub in Kirriemuir between February 1 and 28 last year.