True Detective July 2003

True Detective July 2003

£3.50

On February 11th, 1927, a strange old man presented himself at the gates of Broadmoor Lunatic Asylum…

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On February 11th, 1927, a strange old man presented himself at the gates of Broadmoor Lunatic Asylum, and the astonished wards quickly hustled him inside. He was James Kelly an escapee on the run for 39 years, but far more than that, he was probably the world’s most famous mass killer. He was, as James Tully recalls, Jack The Ripper.

The phone call received on Wednesday, May 16th, 1972, by the governor of Belfast’s Crumlin Road Prison was not unexpected. The call came from the office of the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland to say the death sentence on 19-year-old William Holden was to be commuted to life imprisonment. In fact, since the end of 1961 the lives of all prisoners sentenced to death in Northern Ireland had been spared, and in the previous 40 years only 11 had been executed. This month True Detective marks the 30th anniversary of the death penalty in the region with Matthew Spicer recalling the cases of the 11 hanged men.

Think you’re energetic? Consider a day in the life of William Wood, Rising early, this cotton manufacturer left his home in Eyam, Derbyshire, to walk to Manchester’s Cotton Exchange. The journey would take in three counties, and he planned to collect a few overdue payments on his way back. Still think you’re energetic? After completing his business in Manchester he began his return journey at almost 1 p.m. Despite the 29-mile trek ahead of him Wood expected to be home with his family that night. Sadly, on July 16th, 1823, that was not to be. It was approximated that he had £100 on his person when he stopped at an inn at Disley for a glass of ale. Three unemployed teenagers were also in the bar, and to them £100 must have seemed like a king’s ransom. Read Sara Lee’s historic classic Murder On The Road To Whaley Bridge.

This month’s Execution America warrants a special mention. In the great debate on capital punishment, death penalty supports often site depraved and/or sadistic murderers as deserving to die. The crime commited by Michael Eugene Thompson surely falls into the sadistic category. Read our report and let us hear your views on the case. incidentally, the items that comprised Thompson’s last meal take some digesting!

TATE TAPE CLUE TO MACABRE MURDERS
Victims Tortured and Gift Wrapped

GREAT ESCAPES
The stories of Girls Who Fought Back At Their Kidnappers

Sex Murders Of The 60s
THE DRUNKEN DEMON OF FOREST GLADE

CRIME OBSERVER

The Best Of John Dunning, Part 3:
THE KILLER IN A STOLEN TAXI

From Northern Ireland:
THEY WENT TO THE GALLOWS

MYSTERY OF THE MISSING WIFE

WHY JAMES KELLY WAS JACK THE RIPPER

Execution America:
LETHAL INJECTION FOR THE BODY IN THE WELL KILLER

From Derbyshire:
MURDER ON THE ROAD TO WHALEY BRIDGE

Part 8 In The Series:
THE DEFENCE RESTS

SEPARATING THE INNOCENT FROM THE GUILTY

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