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Daily Record
Daily Record
Kathleen Speirs & Lee Dalgetty

Murder of Scots mum Helen Kane found naked in pit still unsolved over 50 years on

The murder of a young Scots mum in Edinburgh remains unsolved by police over 50 years on.

Helen Kane's naked, bloodied body was found under a pile of rocks by a dog walker near Pleasance in the Old Town on May 25, 1970.

The 25-year-old was out with her husband to celebrate their wedding anniversary at the Dockers Club in Academy Street, Leith, the night before.

They were joined by two other couples on what was a rare night out for the lovebirds.

In the wake of the mum-of-four's murder, witnesses claimed a woman, who looked similar to Helen, got into a taxi with a man headed towards Easter Road.

A couple was also spotted in Holyrood Park close to where her body was found, Edinburgh Live reports.

Rosemary Cook was one of the friends out with Helen that night. She described the mum as, 'an attractive, quiet person, who lived for her children'.

At the time she told the Aberdeen Evening Express: “We couldn’t get into the club and Brian and I left Mr and Mrs Kane and the other couple about 7.30pm.

"They said they were going down to Leith. That was the last time I saw Mrs Kane, I did not know about the tragedy until today.”

Helen’s sister Janet was waiting with the couple’s four children but the mum would never make it home.

Her body was discovered by Christopher Holmes, and his Irish setter called Dougal. The dog found her nude body, covered in blood, in a shallow excavation pit filled with rocks south of the Pleasance.

Helen Kane had been celebrating her wedding anniversary at the Docker's club in Edinburgh the night before her body was found (EDINBURGH LIVE)

Detectives immediately launched a hunt, questioning all taxi drivers who had been on duty on Saturday 23.

Police also believed the victim travelled with another young woman on a number 12 bus from the Niddrie Mains area, at around 7.45pm on the Saturday night.

The other passenger travelling with Helen was never traced, and her identity remains a mystery.

As for her killer, several suspects have been investigated though none have come to a conclusion.

At the time, police in Edinburgh and Glasgow looked into possible connections with Bible John; an unidentified serial killer believed to have murdered three young women in Glasgow in the late sixties.

Detectives soon said there was no link to Helen Kane.

Angus Sinclair, who came to be known as one of Scotland’s most prolific serial killers, was also questioned but his family provided an alibi.

Anne Marie Davy, Helen’s niece and goddaughter, said in 2020: “My auntie was only 25 and had four sons aged six and under.

"The youngest was only about ten months old. This was a really rare night out for her, but even so she left early, we think to get back for her kids.

"She was kind and loving and she deserves justice.”

To this day, Police Scotland are committed to finding answers.

Detective Chief Inspector Brian Geddes said: "Unresolved murders are cases that are never closed and Police Scotland is fully committed to identifying those people responsible for all such cases.

"Police Scotland works closely with the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service and meets regularly to review outstanding unresolved murders from across the country.

"Working collaboratively as the Homicide Governance Board, the potential for new investigative opportunities are regularly assessed to maximise the ability to deliver justice for grieving families, irrespective of the passage of time.

"We would appeal to anyone who has information which could assist in such cases, to contact the Police Scotland via the 101 number. Information can also be provided through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, where anonymity can be maintained."

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