Two days after vanishing from her home in Arthur Street, Hove, four-year-old Patricia Owens was found dead less than a mile away, under a seat in front of an allotment shed. She had been strangled.
An unemployed ice-cream salesman, Joseph Dell, 45, was arrested and charged with murder after admitting that he had taken the girl to the allotment. The next thing he remembered, he told police, was that she was dead under the seat.
The jury at Lewes Assizes found Dell guilty but insane, and on MARCH 18th, 1939, he was ordered to be detained in Broadmoor.