ON THIS DAY – June 20, 1893
A sensational narrative has been given to the police at Elsternwick by Jane Cleland, wife of a tailor, who alleges that in June last her husband, James Cleland, administered chloroform to her, and when she was unconscious from its effects endeavoured to suffocate her with the bed tick. The narrative, attested by the woman’s sworn testimony and also by the statement of her daughter, a girl sixteen years of age, led to the drawing up of a criminal warrant by the Clerk of the Court at Elsternwick. This having been signed by a Justice of the Peace was forwarded to the detective office for execution. The warrant charges Cleland with having on June 20th 1893 administered a certain drug to his wife with intent to murder, and this and another and earlier warrant, which accuses him of the less serious offence of wife desertion, are now in the hands of the detectives, who are using their best endeavours to trace the accused. Cleland received two months in gaol.