A TWEEDBANK pensioner was brutally stabbed to death in his own flat, it has emerged.

David Farish, 75, was found dead in his home on Thursday afternoon after police were tipped off by an anonymous phone call. They raced to his home address in Broadlee Bank where the body of the retired window cleaner was discovered.

A post mortem over the weekend confirmed he had been murdered. The flat was cordoned off as forensic officers searched the house and surrounding  area for clues.

Two police vans were parked at the front and rear of the property over the weekend. It is only the second ever murder in the 45-year history of Tweedbank which has a population of 1,700.

One neighbour said last night: "I have been told Davie was stabbed to death. At first the police were not saying anything which was a bit unnerving for people living around here with all the police activity. But apparently it was a nasty stabbing.

"You never saw much of Davie. But his home was used as a drinking den by a lot of young guys and obviously something has got badly out of hand. I just hope they catch whoever did this very quickly.

"It is such a quiet area and nothing much happens so this is totally out of the blue and everyone is shocked."

Another local said:“It came as a complete shock when I heard the police at the back of this house shouting his name on Thursday. “They said they were checking on him and then they got into his house. They came out and I noticed they had blue gloves on so I knew it wasn’t going to be good news.

“I last spoke to him last Sunday and he was just his usual self. He does have family but he never spoke about them. There was an incident two weeks ago when I heard him arguing with a guy in the garden.

“The guy arrived in a car and David made it clear he was to leave and not return to see him – I never asked him about it as it’s none of my business."

The father-of-five's body was found on Thursday within his home address at Broadlee Bank around 1.30p.m. and at first police said the cause of death was "unexplained." Following a post mortem examination on the afternoon of Saturday, February 20 the death is being treated as murder and an investigation led by Police Scotland’s Major Investigation Team is underway.

Detective Inspector David Pinkney from the MIT said: “At this time we are in the initial stages of our inquiries to establish the full circumstances surrounding David’s death. However, as a result of the investigative and forensic work already carried out, we are satisfied that he has been murdered.

“David was last seen alive at 8.15 a.m. on Tuesday, February 16 prior to officers finding his body at 1.30 p.m. on Thursday afternoon. Anyone with information as to his movements between this time period is urged to come forward.

“Police Scotland was alerted to David’s body being within his flat by an anonymous caller who hung up quickly without leaving any details. I would request that individual to urgently get back in touch and help us with our investigation.

“In addition, anyone who has seen any suspicious activity within the Broadlee Bank area between Tuesday 16th and Thursday, February 18 should also contact police immediately.”

Inspector Ali Hutchens from Melrose Police Station said: "This incident will undoubtedly distress and unsettle the local community and I would like to reassure everyone that a robust police presence will be in place throughout the Tweedbank area to investigate this crime, speak with residents and garner information that can help us bring David's killer to justice.

"Thankfully offences of this nature remain extremely rare in the Borders but when they do occur we will utilise all resources at our disposal to investigate thoroughly.

"Anyone with information that can assist with our ongoing inquiries is asked to come forward."

Those with information can contact Police Scotland on 101 or alternatively, the charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Writing on social media his sister Kathleen Richards, formerly of Galashiels now living in Barrow in Furness, said: "I really don't know what to say except someone has murdered my brother David and all the family are devastated that some one could do such a thing and hope and pray that whoever has done this is brought to justice."