There’s an old, old cliché, rooted deeply in some male chauvinistic minds. It goes like this: “If I can’t have her, no one else will.”

Michael Theakstone, 24, a labourer of Castle Fields, Shrewsbury, repeated it again when he was having a row with his wife about their nine-month-old tug-of-love daughter.

Mrs. Theakstone had taken the baby to live with her mother, and her husband was furious. On JULY 7th, 1959, he bought a knife and went first to the cottage where his mother-in-law, Mrs. Dorothy Tibbiott, 53, was living with her aunt, Mrs. Ellen Sutton. Theakstone stabbed both women to death, then took the baby and stabbed her to death too.

Police confronted Theakstone in the village while he was still holding the dead child. “I’ve got to swing, so keep away from me,” he told them. Although capital punishment was still the law, he didn’t swing. Instead he was sentenced to life imprisonment for the triple-murder.