The son of a banker shot dead on the doorstep of their family home nearly 16 years ago has spoken out for the first time, saying he and his family deserve justice and closure from the unsolved murder.
Andrew Wilson, 20, has no memories of his father, Alistair Wilson, apart from seeing him at the age of four lying dying on the doorstep of their home in Nairn in the Scottish Highlands.
He said: “Someone came to our family home on a Sunday evening while my dad was reading my brother and me bedtime stories after our bath. The next thing I know I am looking at my dad lying in our doorway covered in blood.”
At about 7pm on 28 November 2004, Alistair Wilson’s wife, Veronica, opened the door of the house on Crescent Road to a stocky man aged between 30 and 40 wearing a dark jacket and baseball cap. The man asked for her husband by name.
Alistair Wilson, then 30, went out and spoke to the man, who handed him an empty blue envelope with “Paul” written on it. The significance of the word, if any, remains unknown.
After going back indoors to speak to his wife, he returned to the doorstep. His wife heard three shots and found her husband dying in the doorway.
No one has been arrested in connection with the case, which remains under investigation.
“There would be no more bedtime stories, no more playing football or helping him in the garden. My dad and I missed out on so many things together, showing me how to tie a tie, driving lessons and taking me for my first pint,” Wilson said.
“For the last 16 years I have been left wondering why I didn’t have a dad like all my friends. I still cannot believe how someone could shoot my dad dead on our doorstep while my brother and I were upstairs.
“The only memory of my dad I’m left with is the image of him lying on the doorstep. Photographs are all I have and no family should suffer the way we have all these years.”
Wilson said he was appealing on behalf of his family for any information, “no matter how big or small” relating to that night, adding that someone may have the missing piece of information to solve the case.
“Nothing can bring my dad back, but knowing who did this and why could give us the closure we need,” he said.
He said he believed it was a matter of when rather than if justice would be served. Wilson told PA Media: “I just want to know why, why I’ve grown up without a dad, why it was me, why it was my dad.”
Asked about speculation including the suggestion that his father may have been involved in money laundering – something the police have discovered no evidence of – or that his mother had been involved in the killing, he said he could not testify to his dad’s character because he didn’t know him but that he “would like to believe the positive things he has been told”.
He said: “People blaming my mum, that’s the one thing I don’t understand. Police have ruled her out. If anyone listens to the 999 call that they released you can hear the emotion in my mum’s voice … And I know my mum and she’s not a monster that she gets made out to be.”
Wilson has had 10 years of counselling to help cope with his father’s murder and praised the assistance of bereavement groups and charities.
Police have also disclosed new information relating to the investigation: 0.25 calibre bullets, manufactured in the 1980s or 1990s, were used in the murder weapon, a Haenel Suhl pocket pistol from the 1930s. The gun may have been brought to the UK after the second world war.
Det Insp Gary Winter of the major investigation team appealed to members of the public to contact the police if they know of anyone who had a similar pistol, mentioned having firearm souvenirs from the second world war, or anyone with family who had fought in the war.
The possibility that the killer may have had another another target of the same name in mind has also been considered, and Winter asked anyone who knows someone by the same name who “may have been the intended target of violence” to come forward.
Anyone with information is asked to call the police on 101 or email SCDHOLMESAberdeen@scotland.pnn.police.uk.