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Killed junior footballer's family hit out at jail term

Shaun Woodburn's father Kevin has launched an online petition to appeal the sentence.

Shaun Woodburn: Killer jailed for four years.
Shaun Woodburn: Killer jailed for four years.

The family of a former junior footballer killed in Edinburgh on New Year's Day have hit out at his attacker's jail sentence.

An online petition to appeal the sentence given to the killer of Shaun Woodburn, 30, has been launched by the victim's father, Kevin.

It states the four-year sentence given to his 17-year-old killer "does not represent justice".

The petition has gathered more than 20,000 signatures in less than a day.

The teenager, who cannot be named because of his age, punched Mr Woodburn outside Gladstone's Bar in Leith during the early hours of January 1.

The former Bonnyrigg Rose FC player died after suffering massive head injuries.

The teenager had committed several other assaults during the night along with his friend Mohammed Zakariyah, targeting innocent members of the public at random.

'Shaun was killed in a needless act of violence.'
Kevin Woodburn

On Wednesday, Lady Stacey jailed the 17-year-old for four years, with a supervision order of 18 months after his release.

He had originally faced a murder charge but was convicted of the lesser offence of culpable homicide.

Writing on his online petition, Kevin Woodburn said: "Shaun was killed in a needless act of violence and if you agree that a four-year custodial sentence with an 18-month supervisory order does not represent justice, then please support our petition to the First Minister of Scotland, and the justice minister for Scotland, and finally the lord advocate."

He asked supporters to "tell the authorities that this is not acceptable justice".

A spokesman for the Crown Office said: "As with all cases, the Crown will consider the sentence and give consideration to whether it might be unduly lenient."

Zakariyah, 19, was ordered to carry out 240 hours of unpaid work.

He had pleaded guilty to two assaults and a breach of the peace in connection with the incidents around Edinburgh on New Year's Day.     

https://stv.tv/news/east-central/1401762-schoolboy-killed-junior-footballer-on-new-year-s-day/ | default

Shaun Woodburn's long term partner Nicole Cooper added: "I have really struggled coming to terms with no longer having Shaun here.

"Our daughter Riley and my eldest daughter, who Shaun raised as his own, talk about him every single day. We still live in the house we bought as a family and are reminded that he is no longer here.

"I personally believe that a four year custodial sentence is a disgrace to Shaun's memory. 

"It's not justice.

"That boy was reckless that night and had a violent background. 

"He was known to police and if the justice system can justify such a pitiful sentence, what does that say to other who believe it's okay to use violence? 

"I thought the guilty verdict would bring us some closure, but after the sentencing, I'm just left feeling unsettled and let down. 

"In a few years time this boy will be free to continue his life while me and my kids suffer and will for the rest of our lives."

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