Grieving family pay thousands of pounds to exhume relative after discovering he was buried in grave next to child killer who stabbed and strangled five-year-old girl in 1960s

  • A grieving family paid thousands of pounds to exhume their loved one 
  • They found he was next to Sam Glass, a notorious child killer in Scotland 

A grieving family have paid thousands of pounds to exhume their loved one after discovering he had been buried next to one of Scotland’s most notorious child killers.

Sam Glass was detained in psychiatric hospital for 51 years – longer than anyone else in Scotland – after indecently assaulting, stabbing and strangling five-year-old girl Jean Hamilton in the 1960s.

He died in a secure hospital in November 2018, aged 71, and his unmarked grave went unnoticed at Carnwath Cemetery in Carnwath, South Lanarkshire, for more than a year.

Yet a family were horrified to see Glass’s headstone – bearing his adopted name, John Frederick Faucet – erected next to their loved one’s grave.

They embarked on an almost three-year mission to have the relative exhumed and reinterred at a different spot within the cemetery.

The gravestone of convicted child killer Sam Glass (right), also known as John Frederick Fauce at Carnwath Cemetery, South Lanarkshire, Scotland 

A member of the family, who do not want to be identified, said their relative, who died in 2019, was now ‘at peace’ and said the several thousand pounds it cost to move him was a ‘small price to pay’.

They have called on South Lanarkshire Council not to allow anyone else to be buried around Glass’s grave without relatives being made aware, but the council said it was bound by ‘data protection’ not to disclose any information.

The family source said: ‘It’s not a cost you would want but we weren’t going to leave him where he was. He’s at peace and we are happy now.

‘The headstone of Sam Glass is currently sitting on its own with nothing either side of him. It should stay that way.’

Glass was detained in 1967 for the assault and culpable homicide of Jean Hamilton, five.

He abducted the youngster from a courtyard where his mother lived in Bridgeton, Glasgow, on 2 July 1967 before carrying her to a disused railway tunnel.

There he sexually assaulted her, stabbed her with a needle and strangled her before stuffing her body into a closet.

Sam Glass (pictured) was detained in 1967 for the assault and culpable homicide of Jean Hamilton, five

Glass was ordered to be detained indefinitely at The State Hospital, a psychiatric hospital in Carstairs. Glass was held in secure hospitals for 51 years before he died from a brain tumour.

It cost millions of pounds to hold him at The State Hospital, then, for the last three years of his life, at Glasgow’s Rowanbank Clinic.

Glass, who changed his name to John Frederick Faucet in 2015, died with an estate of £50,000, which he accrued in benefits over the years because he was considered a patient and not a prisoner. He is understood to have put his burial plans in place long before his death.

In 2020, the family of the person buried next to Glass revealed their grief at their discovery. They said a ‘good man’ had been laid to rest alongside someone ‘evil through and through’.

They told how their loved one’s widow was too traumatised to visit the grave as frequently as she once had.

Soon after they became aware of Glass’s grave they instructed a lawyer and applied through the court system for an exhumation order – a process which took more than two years to complete.

Sam Glass, then 20, killed Jean Hamilton, five, (pictured) in Bridgeton, Glasgow, on July 2, 1967

A family source said: ‘They moved him at 5am so no one was around and moved him further up within the same cemetery.

‘They put one coffin into another and just moved him quietly. His widow is happy now because she can go and visit whenever she likes.

‘We can all settle now as she had planned to go in with him and couldn’t have if he had stayed next to Glass.’

The family paid an undisclosed sum of several thousands pounds for the exhumation and more fees to an undertaker who oversaw the process.

They now want assurances from the council that no other family will go through what they have.

A South Lanarkshire Council spokesman said: ‘Information about adjacent lair owners cannot be released in any circumstances as this is personal information and to do so would be a breach of data protection legislation’

The source said: ‘I’d hate for another family to go through what we have and for a child to have been put in there.

‘Our loved one is now laid to rest next to a wee baby who was born sleeping. I dread the thought of this wee baby being put next to Sam Glass.

‘I don’t think the council had thought properly about the area they put him in. There are lots of ex-Carstairs hospital workers in the area who know exactly who he was and what he did. It was insensitive.’

It is understood the lairs around Glass’s grave will still be available for use.

A South Lanarkshire Council spokesman said: ‘Requests for bodies to be exhumed from lairs are dealt with on a case-by-case basis. We understand and sympathise with the sensitivities in this case.

‘However, information about adjacent lair owners cannot be released in any circumstances as this is personal information and to do so would be a breach of data protection legislation.’

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