ON THIS DAY – January 28, 1926


Martin Rueben Knopp, formerly a cook on the steamer Ashridge, was charged with having wilfully murdered Martin Sydney Richards (38) at Collingwood on January 28. The story told in court was that on the night in question Richards, who was in the habit of visiting Knopp’s house during Knopp’s absence, called at the place and after an argument put Knopp out of the house, which he then re-entered with Knopp’s wife and shut the door. Knopp later returned with a revolver. He threatened his wife, but she went on her knees to him and she then ran away. As Knopp entered the house several shots were heard. Later in the street Richards was picked up dead. Detective Harding read a statement made by Knopp in which he admitted having shot Richards. Knopp was found guilty and sentenced to be executed, however it was commuted to 11 years in gaol.