Teenager murdered schoolboy in stabbing at railway station

Daniel Haig, 18, stabbed Justin McLaughlin in the heart during a broad daylight attack in 2021.

Teenager murdered schoolboy Justin McLaughlin in stabbing at Glasgow High Street Railway station STV NewsPolice Scotland

A teenager has been convicted of murdering a 14-year-old boy at a railway station in Glasgow.

Daniel Haig, 18, stabbed Justin McLaughlin in the heart during a broad daylight attack on October 16, 2021.

Jurors heard how the dying schoolboy – who had celebrated his birthday two days earlier – begged for his mum as friends came to his aid on the platform of High Street station.

Justin was rushed to hospital, but never survived the single blow delivered by Haig, who was 16 at the time.

Daniel Haig was found guilty of murder at the High Court in Glasgow.Police Scotland

Haig denied murder, but had admitted stabbing the boy.

He claimed he had only wanted to “injure” Justin after a fight at the station shortly before the attack.

Haig was convicted following a trial at the High Court in Glasgow on Thursday.

He now faces a life sentence when he returns to the dock.

14-year-old Justin McLaughlin was stabbed at High Street station in Glasgow.STV News

Justin and his friends had gone into Glasgow that afternoon for food at a McDonald’s.

They then returned to High Street station where Haig and a friend were already.

The trial heard a remark was shouted towards the pair about the area in Glasgow they were from.

Haig then said to his friend: “All of them are running at us.”

Haig told jurors he got a knife from his rucksack and hid it in his waistband.

His friend pleaded with him “not to do anything stupid”.

But, the court heard Haig instead ran at the group and a fight broke out on the platform.

After the scuffle ended, Haig jumped onto the track to retrieve the blade which he had dropped.

CCTV captured him chasing the youngsters again – Justin tripped and fell before Haig caught up and plunged the knife in him.

The thug grabbed his rucksack, raced up the station steps and onto the street leaving behind his wounded victim. He tossed the bloodied knife in a bin.

A friend of Justin recalled the boy staggering towards a flower bed at the station.

In pre-recorded evidence, the 14-year-old girl stated: “He said something like: ‘They have got me’. He fell face first onto the ground.

“Justin was trying to stand up. He kept saying: ‘I need my mum…I need to go home’.”

“His lips had turned blue and white. The other boys (with them) were crying.”

Justin’s phone then rang as he lay stricken at the station.

The witness said: “It was like his mum or something. One of the boys answered. I do not know what he said.”

Justin was rushed to the city’s Royal Hospital for Children, but never recovered. He had been stabbed in the heart.

Haig gave evidence and told his KC John Scullion that he had not set out to kill anyone that day.

He claimed to have had the blade for “protection” having been attacked a day earlier.

Haig feared Justin – who he had never met before – and the others had followed him to the station.

He planned to use the weapon to “chase” them away, but admitted then stabbing Justin although only to cause a “minor injury”.

Mr Scullion put to him: “How do you feel that you killed Justin McLaughlin? His family are in the courtroom.”

Haig: “I feel really bad about it. I would like to apologise to them. It was never my intention to kill anyone.”

Prosecutor Steven Borthwick KC later put to Haig that after the fight stopped on the platform, he was under “no threat”.

Mr Borthwick said Haig instead got his knife from the tracks and chased the group.

The advocate depute: “You were intending on doing serious damage to one of them.”

Haig: “No.”

Mr Borthwick: “You have seen the video – it looks very much exactly what you were intending to do.”

Haig replied: “No.”

The teenager then refuted the suggestion he was a “liar”.

Haig was remanded in custody.

Following the conviction, detective chief inspector Brian Geddes said: “This was a shocking loss of a young life which has left a family devastated.

“Although today’s conviction can’t change what happened, I hope the outcome brings them at least a degree of closure.

“I would like to thank everyone who assisted with our inquiry.

“Violence like this has no place in our society and we will continue to work closely with our partners to bring perpetrators to justice.”

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