a relative of a friend of mine called Lily Waterhouse, was battered and strangled to death in her own bedroom in Leeds
True Detective August 2011
"I am hoping you may feature in a future edition the story of a relative of a friend of mine called Lily Waterhouse," a reader from Tonbridge asked. "They came across her while compiling a family tree. She was battered and strangled to death in her own bedroom in Amberley Road, Leeds, by her female lodger who was later hanged for it. We know little about Lily so any information would be appreciated." Read our story of ‘Why Little Louie Was Hanged’ where we hope to have at least answered some of those questions.
Life had turned sour for Richard Wigley. Formerly a thriving butcher with a Shrewsbury market stall, he had taken to drink, spending the past 15 years as an alcoholic womaniser. His wife had left him, to no one’s surprise, and in November 1901 she took him to court claiming his maintenance payments were in arrears. Then to rub salt into his wounds, his long-term girlfriend dumped him.
Popular though he was with those who liked to see him perform, Samuel Burrows was actually an incompetent hangman. He was usually drunk while carrying out his duties and would cavort around like a modern-day pop star in front of vast crowds of spectators. And to the utter dismay of prison officials his extraordinary antics had become as great a draw as the criminals he had been charged with hanging. None of which made for a quick, painless execution for his "customers."
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