William Beggs: The Limbs In The Loch Killer (One of Scotland's Most Prolific Serial Killers?) Part One

(Pic credit: Caledonia/Daily Record)

This is one of the most disturbing cases that I have researched. I knew a little bit about William Beggs, who was known back in December of 1999 as the ''Limbs In The Loch Killer''. I was living in Scotland at the time and the headlines in the local newspapers read like something out of a horror movie. Everyone was on edge, wondering what was going to happen next. Before I go any further into this case and the background of William beggs, I have to warn you that some of the details that will be included in this post are quite disturbing.

I remember picking up a Scottish newspaper back in early December 1999 and reading articles about body parts that had been found washed up on the beaches of Loch Lomond and a lady out walking her dog had discovered a severed human head in a plastic carrier bag on a beach in Troon. There were horrifying details and nobody knew if it was the result of gangland murders, a serial killer or if the body parts had all belonged to the same victim.

For the people who lived in the seaside towns on the West Coast of Scotland, they were scared to go for a walk on the beach in case they would find something disturbing. At the same time, reports of an 18 year old man called Barry Wallace who had gone missing after a Christmas party in Kilmarnock, Scotland were circulating. At first the police didn't make the connection with the body parts found to Barry Wallace's disappearance. They assumed the horrific findings to be the result of a gangland murder.

On Monday the 6th of December 1999, the same day that Barry Wallace's parents had reported him missing, Police divers were carrying out a training exercise in Loch Lomond. One of the divers had discovered two black bin liners in the water. After inspecting what was in the bags, the police found a human hand with a piece of arm attached and a foot with part of a leg. The police divers decided to spread out over the next 24 hours and search for more possible remains; they soon came across another couple of black bin liners containing another hand, a piece of an arm and a thigh. A severed head was found 10 days later, washed up on a beach on the Ayrshire coast.

The investigation team had the gruesome task of trying to identify the body parts and who they belonged too. They were soon to discover that all of the remains found, were of the missing teenager, Barry Wallace.

Barry Wallace:

Barry Wallace was a typical 18 year old who loved his nights out, socialising with friends but was also known to have his shy moments too. He wasn't afraid of hard work either and earned his own money doing shifts at his local Tesco supermarket, a job he had been in since he left school at 17. Barry was popular at work and got on really well with the staff and was regarded as a valued member of the team. He lived at home with his parents and brother and was considering joining the Army because he thought it would help him to learn a trade and see some of the world. He also loved music and fancied himself as a bit of a DJ. He also was thinking about training to become a PE teacher. Barry seemed to be thinking a lot about his career prospects and looking at different options.

Being a handsome young man, Barry was never short of attention from the opposite sex and would often bring girlfriends home to meet his parents. At 18 he was still learning about life and wasn't looking to settle down in a long term serious relationship at that time. He was a kind person and a friend once described how he'd once won £250 on a slot machine and instead of keeping the winnings for himself, he spent the money on his friends. Barry was 6'2 and would often be described as a ''tower of strength'', he seemed to be the person that you could always talk to about your problems. He loved living life to the full but there was also a serious and mature side to him, even at the age of 18.

He'd never been in trouble with the law and respected his parents. If he was going out anywhere he would always call them to let them know where he was and when he would be back. He was a caring person who hated the idea of his parents or his friends worrying about him. He also cared about his work colleagues and didn't like to let anyone down. When he failed to show for work on Monday the 6th of December 1999 with no record of him making a phonecall to say he wasn't coming in, his parents and colleagues became concerned and contacted the police to report him missing.

On the afternoon of Saturday the 5th of December, Barry was doing some Christmas shopping, he had plans later that night to attend a Christmas party with his work colleagues. His parents were also getting ready to visit some friends out of town and stopped off in town to buy some flowers and chocolates to take as gifts. Whilst in town they bumped into Barry and his mum asked him what he wanted for his dinner and what time he'd be finished shopping. Barry told them he wasn't sure what time he'd be finished but not to worry about dinner, he'd grab something at home.

Later that evening around 8pm, Barry's dad phoned Barry to check that he'd got back to the house ok and had had something proper to eat for his dinner. His dad knew that he had plans to go out that night and that he'd be drinking so he wanted to make sure that he ate something before he went out. Barry answered the phone and all seemed well, he told his dad that he'd had some dinner and that after the Christmas party, he and some friends were going to the Expo nightclub, so he'd be back a little bit later.

That night, Barry was seen at the Christmas party laughing and enjoying himself with his colleagues. The drinks were flowing and Barry was getting merrier and merrier as the night went on. At 1am, the Christmas party was coming to a close and people started to go home. Barry and a female colleague said goodnight to their colleagues and proceeded to walk into the town centre towards the Expo nightclub.

At this point, Barry was heavily intoxicated and was seen by a female colleague (who was getting a lift home by her father in law) staggering about a little bit. The woman he left the party with was further ahead of him. Barry fell over and the female colleague who was in the car told her father in law to turn the car around and see if he was ok. They offered Barry a lift but he refused and seemed to still be in the party mood, they reluctantly drove off, thinking that one of the colleague's who'd gone to the nightclub would spot him and put him in a taxi.

Some time after 1am, Barry was seen standing in a Taxi queue where he got into a heated conversation with another young man that he knew. They were both drunk and the other man punched Barry twice, he fell down the second time but wasn't seriously injured. When he stood back up, the man apologised and they both shook hands.

The last known sighting of Barry Wallace was outside the Expo nightclub around 1:30 am. After this, nobody knows if he actually got inside the nightclub or he had wandered off somewhere else. One thing we do know is that he ended up falling into the murderous trap of William Beggs.

Continued in part two 

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  1. I don't think that I have ever heard of this case, but in 1999 I was in the 6th grade and 10/11 years old, one of the few I remember from that time was when Josh Philips was convicted of killing Maddie Clifton, I mostly remember because both of them were friends of my friend and I met them both, it's weird that it's been 20 years since then.

    I think the most heartbreaking parts of cases like these is it always happens to good people, and even if there is a 'reason' it never makes since, and to cut up the body is so sicken of the murder, and it shows how sadistic the killer is.


    1. Thank you for the comment & for all these fab comments lovely, much appreciated!! I've never heard of the case you've just mentioned but that's crazy that you met them before the murder. That's the kind of thing that stays with you. There was girl who was murdered in y hometown in Scotland and I worked with her mother for a short time. I've been thinking about writing about the case at some point. I've subscribed to your amazing blog and can't wait to read about the cases etc that you have covered : ) x