Obsessed by delusions that his common-law wife Sybil Da Costa was being unfaithful, James Achew, 57, killed her on NOVEMBER 24th, 1929, by cutting her throat with a razor.
With their child they had lived together as “Mr. and Mrs. Starr” at the London boarding-house kept by Sybil in Notting Hill. Achew, a Japanese-American, did no work, living on his wife’s income, and after the murder he attempted suicide.
At his trial his defence of insanity was supported by the medical officer of Brixton Prison, but Achew was convicted and sentenced to death. He was then reprieved on February 10th, 1930, and was subsequently committed to Broadmoor.