Joanne has not had justice, says murder victim’s family

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THE FAMILY of Arbroath murder victim Joanne Rennie say they are disgusted with the sentence given to her killer Graham Buist.

On Monday, Buist (30) was sentenced to life in prison at the High Court in Edinburgh and was ordered to serve a minimum of 13 years and four months.

He had already admitted in court early last month that he fatally stabbed Joanne in the chest after hitting her over the head with a brick at the flat they shared together in Culloden Road in September last year.

He told the court that he and Joanne, who had been in a relationship together, had argued over a loss of money and said it made him “lose the plot.”

But after hearing that Buist could be freed after 13 years, Joanne’s sister Agnes told the Arbroath Herald she and the rest of the family were disgusted with the news.

She said: “How can they call 13 years life? There are a lot of people out there who commit petty crimes, for example theft, assault, stealing cars and get more of a sentence that that.

“Once he has completed his sentence and he is released, he will then be able to carry on with his life, while Joanne is lying cold in her grave.

“We just feel it seems Joanne’s life wasn’t important and it was only worth 13 years which is ridiculous.

“Graham is only 30 years old and will be 43 years old when he is released. Joanne deserved more justice than that.”

Buist also has previous convictions for domestic offences including assault and had been drinking heavily on the night of the murder.

Joanne’s death was the second tragedy for the family in the space of five months as they also had to deal with the death of her older brother Robert.

And Agnes added since that moment, life has never been the same.

She explained: “ The way we feel at this present time, is we will never be able to return to normal.

“My mum is the one struggling more than us. We are having to be strong as a family for her. She is having nightmares at night, waking up screaming and it’s horrible.

“She had to face emptying Joanne’s flat with my brother John and his partner Laura, to try and come to terms with the fact that Joanne has gone.

“I have yet to find my way to accept it and say goodbye and do not know how to or in what way to do so.

“We all miss her so much and will never get over what he did to her.

“Maybe in time we can rebuild our lives and move on as I’m sure that’s what Joanne would have wanted.”

Twitter: @JenniferNewton1