A footprint found on Amber Gibson’s bra appeared to match a shoe worn by her brother, who is accused of sexually abusing and murdering her, a court has heard.
A forensic scientist said at the Glasgow High Court trial that she analyzed a stain on a bra near where the body of 16-year-old Amber was found.
Laura Wilcock said this appears to match a shoe found at the teen’s brother Connor Gibson’s accommodation.
Gibson, 20, is said to have assaulted Amber Gibson on November 26, 2021 at Cadzow Glen in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire, stripping her of her clothes and repeatedly blunting her to the head and body.
A second man, Stephen Corrigan, 44, is also on trial.
He is accused of discovering Amber’s body between November 26 and 28 last year, but instead of alerting police, he allegedly touched her inappropriately and then hid her body.
Both men have pleaded not guilty to all charges against them, with Corrigan’s defense attorney Rhonda Anderson presenting a special alibi defense on his behalf.
When questioned by Assistant Counsel Richard Goddard KC, Ms Wilcock said the mark was on the left side of George’s bra.
She analyzed four pairs of shoes, including a pair of Connor Gibson’s Adidas Gazelles.
Mr Goddard asked the forensic scientist: “The mark you found between the bra and the footwear matched the Adidas Gazelle training shoes found in the Blue Triangle (accommodation).”
Ms Wilcock said: “We do not use the term ‘matching’, there was a match in the patterns.”
The forensic scientist was also questioned by Rhonda Anderson as a representative of Corrigan.
She asked, “The three pairs of Stephen Corrigan shoes have been banned from the brand?” to which she replied, “Yes.”
Ms Wilcock replied “yes” when asked if the mark could have been caused by one of Connor Gibson’s shoes.
She also said the stain was found on the inside of the bra, suggesting it was not worn at the time.
Prosecutors also accused Gibson – also known by the surname Niven – of pinching Amber’s neck with his hands and strangling her with intent to rape her.
Gibson is also accused of attempting to thwart the aims of justice by disposing of blood-stained clothing and phoning the children’s home where his sister was staying and pretending she was alive.
Also heard at the trial was testimony from Detective Inspector Stephen McGrath, who had questioned Corrigan in connection with Amber’s murder.
The attorney’s representative said: “Are you aware that a match to Stephen Corrigan’s DNA was found in swabs taken from multiple sites on Amber Gibson’s body?”
The detective inspector replied, “That’s right,” adding that Corrigan had become a suspect in the investigation.
The Counsel questioned the Detective Inspector about the questioning, which took place at Helen Street Police Station in January 2022.
They read a transcript of portions of the interview in which Mr McGrath said Corrigan’s DNA was found on several different parts of Amber’s body, including her breasts, buttocks and thighs.
The transcript indicated that when asked for an explanation, Corrigan said, “It’s a shock, it’s a shock to me.”
During the interview, he repeatedly said he didn’t know why his DNA was found on Amber’s body, once saying he was “completely at a loss”.
When asked if he had been in the area where Amber’s body was found, he said, “I might have gone into the bush to pee if I had a drink or something.”
He also told police he had “nothing to hide.”
The jury was shown the full video recording of the police questioning, which lasted more than two and a half hours.
In the video, Mr McGrath repeatedly asks Corrigan for an explanation of why his DNA is on Amber’s body – with Corrigan saying he doesn’t know.
Ms Anderson asked him if elements of Corrigan’s alibi had been investigated by police, but Mr McGrath said he was no longer involved in the investigation from that point forward.
The trial before Lord Mulholland continues.