ON THIS DAY – June 7, 1913

Clarence Maud Cowell and Eliza Louisa Barry, the two young women who pleaded guilty to conspiring to murder, Florence May King at Ascot Vale, were to-day before the Criminal Court in Melbourne for sentence.  A number of witnesses gave evidence of the good character of both accused, who sobbed loudly, and were supported in the dock in a half-fainting condition. Counsel pleaded that Cowell’s action was due to her affections for King, and Barry to loyalty for Colwell. Sir John Madden, the Chief Justice, said he could not be influenced by pity or eloquence in the face of the shocking action of the accused, who had probably escaped the scaffold owing to Mrs. King suspecting that there was poison in her tea. He ordered them to eight years’ Imprisonment. They had to be assisted from the dock.