Great Britain

Family of Scottish woman slam police for 'serious failings' that led to her death

The family of a West Lothian hairdresser murdered by her ex-partner yesterday took aim at police for “serious failings” that resulted in her killing.

Katrina O’Hara, 44, originally from Bathgate, was killed by Stuart Thomas at the hairdressing salon in Dorset where she worked, on January 7 2016.

The family of a West Lothian hairdresser murdered by her ex-partner yesterday took aim at police for serious failings that resulted in her killing picture: SWNS

The family of a West Lothian hairdresser murdered by her ex-partner yesterday took aim at police for serious failings that resulted in her killing picture: SWNS

Thomas, who had previously threatened to “do her” and kill himself, had been arrested for harassment days before but was released by police.

Mum-of-three Katrina had contacted police to tell them Thomas had breached his bail conditions in the days before the murder.

READ MORE: Katrina O'Hara: man faces court over hairdresser's murder

But her phone had been seized as police examined it for evidence, and no replacement phone was issued – leaving her unable to call for help when Thomas arrived at her workplace and stabbed her to death.

Katrina OHara, 44, (right) originally from Bathgate, was killed by Stuart Thomas at the hairdressing salon in Dorset where she worked picture: PA

Katrina OHara, 44, (right) originally from Bathgate, was killed by Stuart Thomas at the hairdressing salon in Dorset where she worked picture: PA

In August 2016, Thomas, 53, was sentenced to life imprisonment for the killing.

Speaking at the conclusion of a two-week inquest, where the jury at Bournemouth Town Hall returned a verdict that Ms O’Hara was unlawfully killed, the family said they hoped other police forces would learn from the tragedy.

They said: “We will always feel let down by them. However, looking back and criticising others achieves nothing. So, our focus is on how we can prevent such an awful tragedy happening to other families.”