15 August 1963 – Henry John Burnett

The last Scottish hanging took place on this day in 1963. It was reserved for spurned lover, Henry John Burnett.

The Aberdeen lad was executed for a crime committed in the throes of a jealous rage. He shot his ex-girlfriend Margaret Guyan’s husband Thomas in the face at point blank range after Margaret chose to go back to her merchant seaman spouse over him.

Young Burnett then scooped up Margaret Guyan, commandeered a neighbour’s car and bundled her in before making off with his hostage with the police in pursuit.

Despite his claims of diminished responsibility, the jury took just 25 minutes to find him guilty. So the 21-year old was sent to the gallows in front of 200 spectators at Craiginches Prison in Aberdeen, and hanged by Harry Allen.

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