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Beheaded mum went to police for help

AN IRISH woman whose dismembered body was found in a shallow grave in Scotland visited a police station in the days before she was killed saying she needed accommodation as she had left her son's flat because he had an "episode".

Philomena Dunleavy's son James (40) is accused of battering her to death before burying her in a woodland clearing on Edinburgh's Corstorphine Hill.

The murder trial has been told that Mrs Dunleavy (66) walked into a police station just days before her death asking where she could get a cheap room to stay in.


Mr Dunleavy (40), denies murdering his mother between April 30 and May 7 last year then attempting to cover up the alleged crime by chopping up her body and dumping it in a woodland clearing.

In her testimony Carole Ross (50) the assistant at Portobello Police Station who dealt with Ms Dunleavy's query about cheap accommodation, said the woman she spoke to had "lovely teeth and an Irish accent".

Ms Ross said: "She said her son had had an episode and she walked away from him when he had episodes." It was at her son's flat in Balgreen Road, prosecutors allege, that Mrs Dunleavy, from Marino, Dublin, was murdered between April 30 and May 7 last year.

The murder trial also heard testimony from forensic scientist Amanda Pirie who said that Mr Dunleavy's flat was later examined and just two tiny spots of blood matching Ms Dunleavy's were found in the bedroom.

She said it was impossible to tell when, or how, the two blood spots found in a bedroom had got there.

Prosecutors claim that Dunleavy vacuumed and washed his flat to remove bloodstains and torched a bed and mattress.

The trial continues on Monday.