Posts

ON THIS DAY – July 3, 1865

An inquest was held at Sunbury by the district coroner on the body of a man named Henry Junod, who met his death by violence on Sunday night. From the evidence it appeared that the deceased was found on Monday morning last by a teamster named George Hoinville, lying at his garden gate fence. His face was covered with blood, and when found
he was quite dead. A. woman named Diana Walton gave evidence to the effect that on Sunday morning she bad seen three men pass her house, and heard one of them say “I’ll give it him.” One of them had a knife in his hand, and that she saw one of them stoop, and with something he had in his hand strike at the ground. Deceased was not of the party. The three men then went away.
Mr John Shaw Miles, surgeon, made the post mortem examination, and he described the wounds on the man’s face and head, and said the cause of death was fracture of the skull and extravasation of blood on and in the brain and laceration of the brain. Two wounds above and below the right eye were made with a blunt instrument, such as the
rail of a fence, and by the exertion of great strength. Another wound near the ear was caused by a sharp instrument, such as a knife.
The inquest was adjourned till Friday for the analysis of blood on the trousers, and the production of further witnesses.

ON THIS DAY – June 17, 1980

The fact the killer used a knife from Ms James’s kitchen to stab her 68 times suggests he didn’t come armed.

Fitzroy town clerk John James was listening on the telephone when his former wife was attacked by the killer in her Thornbury bookshop about noon on June 17, 1980.

She had a good relationship with her former husband and often rang him if she needed assistance with something, or wanted to talk to him about their two sons Mark and Adam.  Ms James rang Fitzroy Town Hall about 11.50am on the day she died and tried to speak to John James.  She was told by her former husband’s secretary, Isabella Fabris, that he was not at his desk.

Ms James said: “There’s someone in the shop. Tell him to ring me.”  Her former husband rang her back about five minutes later.  “Maria answered the phone and said `hang on please’,” Mr James said in his statement to police.  “I then held on and while doing this I heard discussion in the background and then a bit of a scream and then there was more discussion and then silence.  “I then started to get edgy and started to whistle into the phone to attract someone’s attention.  “I could then still hear the conversation in the background and I couldn’t hear the exact words but Maria was talking fairly loudly.  “I then heard a second scream. I then really thought something was wrong so I decided to go to the shop to see what was up.”

Mr James took about 15 minutes to get to the shop at 736 High St, Thornbury.

The front door was locked and a customer was standing outside.

Mr James and the customer looked through the window and both saw movement of the curtain that separated the shop from the rear living quarters, as though somebody was peeking through it.  Really worried by this time, Mr James went round the back and climbed through the kitchen window and started yelling, “Is anybody home?”  He opened the back door in case he needed to run out in a hurry.

“I then crept along the passage and on the left is my son’s room and I glanced in there and couldn’t see anything,” his statement to police said.  “I then reached over and turned the light on in her room and I saw her on the floor.  “Her eyes were open and there was blood all over the place. I knew she was dead.”

Mr James ran to a neighbour and phoned police.

He then went back to the front of the shop and was stunned to find the previously locked door was open and there was a woman customer browsing the bookshelves.  It appears certain the killer was still in the shop when Mr James arrived and left through the front door as Mr James was climbing in through the back window.

The killer left Ms James, fully clothed, lying on her back with her hands tied in front of her with twine.

On this day …….. 11th of April 1907

An unfortunate accident happened to Mr. Michael Bowles a farmer, of Wharparilla, near Echuca. He was engaged chaffcutting, and while on the stack dropped the knife which he was using. It fell amongst the hay, and in stooping to pick up another Bowles accidentally knelt on the knife, the blade of which entered the side of the knee joint, causing a painful wound.

EXECUTED THIS DAY – December 22, 1941

ALFRED BYE – MELBOURNE

Alfred Bye, 42, formerly a military transport driver at Darley Camp, was executed at Pentridge on this day in 1941. He made no final statement. Bye was sentenced to death for the murder of Thomas Edward Walker, 45, a soldier, of Broadmeadows Camp, in a reserve near the Government Printing Office on September 19. Walker died from a number of knife wounds. No appeal against the sentence was made by Bye, but requests for commutation of the sentence to life imprisonment were made by the Labour party and the Howard League for Penal Reform.

 

ON THIS DAY – November 2, 1884

 

John Redden and his companions, John Riley and James Duggan had met up on the evening of 2nd November 1884 and made their way to the Fire Brigade Hotel. Riley had originally gone out that evening to meet his friend George Vale. He had parted company with George and had then met up with Redden, Duggan and Edward Stewart.  As it was past midnight the hotel was closed, but when the group knocked on the back door, Bridget answered and let them in to have some drinks. The group finally left about 2 am and Redden said he was going back to Bryant’s smithy where he worked as it was too late to bother going home.

On the way along Little Ryrie Street when they were met by a woman, Mrs Elizabeth Gillies, who yelled out to them that they were larrikens, blackguards and responsible for breaking her windows. Redden told her to “Go home and mind your own business”. Elizabeth who was not sober, turned to leave but slipped on the footpath and screamed ‘Murder, police’. All of a sudden a man named John Hunt rushed at Redden and the group, wielding a knife. Duggan received minor cuts but Redden fell to the ground having been stabbed severely. Hunt called out ‘Aha, aha you got that then”!

John Kelly was a bootmaker of Lt Ryrie Street and on hearing the noise went to assist. He helped Duggan and the others take Redden to the smithy’s, having to pass Hunt’s house on the way. Constables Lee and Daniels also came to help. By the time they got Redden to Bryant’s he had died in Constable Lee’s arms. Henry Pride and his wife were in a nearby cottage. He heard windows being broken by boys and called Sgt Wickham to make investigations. Together they went to Hunt’s house. On arriving there Hunt said that the group of boys were his friends. It appeared that Elizabeth had invited them ‘to come up to her house’ and then once they had stepped inside, asked ‘Who’s going to get the beer?’ Hunt said he would pay for it if someone went to get it.

The group of boys included Joseph Burr, William Winter, Joseph Atkinson, Lawrence Davey and Robert Grierson. The boys had all agreed not to tell the police anything and Sgt. Wickham on visiting Hunt’s house found one of the boys was in the bedroom with Elizabeth. He also found the knife with blood on it. Hunt had said he’d gone to Elizabeth’s rescue as Duggan was holding her down while Redden raped her. He had acted in self-defence. It wasn’t until Elizabeth was taken to the morgue to identify Redden as her attacker and then back to the lock-up that she mentioned the rape charge.

Duggan was remanded but discharged as the evidence was not sufficient against him. Supt. Toohey objected as the court proceedings had not ended so he was remanded again until the next morning. Hunt was brought up for trial as was Duggan on a charge of rape. The Doctor attending the inquest stated that Gillies injuries to her face and body had not been caused through any assault. Duggan was discharged but given some stern advice by the magistrate that he should give up street-walking, late hours, bad company and be mindful of his present painful position! Duggan replied ‘Thank you, Sir”.

Hunt and Gillies were charged with having wilfully murdered Redden. Gillies was released due to not having anything to do with the murder nor inciting Hunt to do anything but re-arrested for vagrancy. She was given 6 months gaol, with a combined charge for prostitution also. Hunt was sentenced to death but it was commuted to 15 years imprisonment with hard labour.

ON THIS DAY…… 19th September 1885

A case of deliberate murder occurred on this day in 1885 at Charlton, a township in the North-western district. A man, name unknown, was sitting on a chair in the bar of the Golden Fleece Hotel, when Edward Hunter, known as The Piddle, a resident of Wychetella, came in and said to the man on the chair, ‘Where is my money?’ to which the man replied, ‘I have no money.’ Hunter then went out and soon returned again with a carving knife, which he plunged into the breast of the stranger, who died within 15 minutes. Hunter was arrested, and he expressed a hope that he had killed the man.

 

ON THIS DAY …….18th August 2001

On 18 August 2001, at approximately 3am, Lloyd Crosbie sat awake watching a movie. His girlfriend Melissa Maahs lay sleeping beside him in the couple’s bed. Without warning, Crosbie removed a skinning knife from a scabbard and proceeded to stab his girlfriend three times to the head while she lay sleeping. Melissa woke and began to scream and fight off her attacker.  Crosbie then attacked Melissa’s mother Kaye in the hallway of their home as she came to her daughter’s assistance. Realising Kaye was not dead, he attacked her further using two porcelain ornaments, smashing them both; a frying pan, buckling it; and an iron.  Crosbie alternated between attacking Melissa and Kaye many times over, and would have sexual intercourse with Melissa’s dead body, using pornographic magazines on her back while defiling her. After murdering the two women, Crosbie then disturbed the contents of the house to make it appear as if a burglary had occurred.  Crosbie escaped the murder scene in a taxi, travelling to Morwell railway station and purchasing a ticket to Wangaratta. A male relative later found the bodies of the two women when he visited their home after not hearing from them for two days. Crosbie disposed of the murder weapon in a creek in Wangaratta.

 

 

 

ON THIS DAY – July 3, 1865

An inquest was held at Sunbury by the district coroner on the body of a man named Henry Junod, who met his death by violence on Sunday night. From the evidence it appeared that the deceased was found on Monday morning last by a teamster named George Hoinville, lying at his garden gate fence. His face was covered with blood, and when found
he was quite dead. A. woman named Diana Walton gave evidence to the effect that on Sunday morning she bad seen three men pass her house, and heard one of them say “I’ll give it him.” One of them had a knife in his hand, and that she saw one of them stoop, and with something he had in his hand strike at the ground. Deceased was not of the party. The three men then went away.
Mr John Shaw Miles, surgeon, made the post mortem examination, and he described the wounds on the man’s face and head, and said the cause of death was fracture of the skull and extravasation of blood on and in the brain and laceration of the brain. Two wounds above and below the right eye were made with a blunt instrument, such as the
rail of a fence, and by the exertion of great strength. Another wound near the ear was caused by a sharp instrument, such as a knife.
The inquest was adjourned till Friday for the analysis of blood on the trousers, and the production of further witnesses.

ON THIS DAY – June 17, 1980

The fact the killer used a knife from Ms James’s kitchen to stab her 68 times suggests he didn’t come armed.

Fitzroy town clerk John James was listening on the telephone when his former wife was attacked by the killer in her Thornbury bookshop about noon on June 17, 1980.

She had a good relationship with her former husband and often rang him if she needed assistance with something, or wanted to talk to him about their two sons Mark and Adam.  Ms James rang Fitzroy Town Hall about 11.50am on the day she died and tried to speak to John James.  She was told by her former husband’s secretary, Isabella Fabris, that he was not at his desk.

Ms James said: “There’s someone in the shop. Tell him to ring me.”  Her former husband rang her back about five minutes later.  “Maria answered the phone and said `hang on please’,” Mr James said in his statement to police.  “I then held on and while doing this I heard discussion in the background and then a bit of a scream and then there was more discussion and then silence.  “I then started to get edgy and started to whistle into the phone to attract someone’s attention.  “I could then still hear the conversation in the background and I couldn’t hear the exact words but Maria was talking fairly loudly.  “I then heard a second scream. I then really thought something was wrong so I decided to go to the shop to see what was up.”

Mr James took about 15 minutes to get to the shop at 736 High St, Thornbury.

The front door was locked and a customer was standing outside.

Mr James and the customer looked through the window and both saw movement of the curtain that separated the shop from the rear living quarters, as though somebody was peeking through it.  Really worried by this time, Mr James went round the back and climbed through the kitchen window and started yelling, “Is anybody home?”  He opened the back door in case he needed to run out in a hurry.

“I then crept along the passage and on the left is my son’s room and I glanced in there and couldn’t see anything,” his statement to police said.  “I then reached over and turned the light on in her room and I saw her on the floor.  “Her eyes were open and there was blood all over the place. I knew she was dead.”

Mr James ran to a neighbour and phoned police.

He then went back to the front of the shop and was stunned to find the previously locked door was open and there was a woman customer browsing the bookshelves.  It appears certain the killer was still in the shop when Mr James arrived and left through the front door as Mr James was climbing in through the back window.

The killer left Ms James, fully clothed, lying on her back with her hands tied in front of her with twine.

ON THIS DAY – May 18, 1912

DEVONDALE

A FOREST TRAGEDY

At the Ballarat Supreme Court John Friedman, aged 20, was charged with the murder of Charles Nunn on May 18 at Devondale, near Beech Forest. According to the Crown case, the men were employed by a settler named Bowker. On May 18, after Bowker and the two men had had tea, a quarrel arose. Friedman had previously given notice of his intention to leave because he could not get on with Nunn. Friedman and Nunn began jostling, and they fell, Friedman being, underneath. Nunn said: “If I let you up, will you be quiet.” Friedman said: “Yes.” He got up, picked up a knife off the table, and stabbed Nunn. Friedman had told another man that Nunn was always wanting to fight, and that Friedman had said that if he fought it would be in the Russian way each man with a knife. Nunn died the day after he was stabbed. Accused, in his evidence, said he did not remember using a knife or anything else until Bowker asked him for a knife, which he handed over. The Jury returned a verdict of manslaughter, and Friedman was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment, with hard labour.

On this day …….. 11th of April 1907

An unfortunate accident happened to Mr. Michael Bowles a farmer, of Wharparilla, near Echuca. He was engaged chaffcutting, and while on the stack dropped the knife which he was using. It fell amongst the hay, and in stooping to pick up another Bowles accidentally knelt on the knife, the blade of which entered the side of the knee joint, causing a painful wound.

ON THIS DAY – February 12, 2014

An eleven-year-old boy was beaten and stabbed to death by his dad in front of his mum and horrified parents and children at the end of cricket practice. Luke Batty is believed to have been struck on the head before being knifed. The youngster died at the scene of the attack in the Melbourne suburb of Tyabb. A 54 year-old man, believed to be Luke’s father Greg, was shot by police and later died in hospital. Police told the Australian Associated Press that Mr Batty threatened paramedics with a knife and started screaming “shoot me” when officers arrived at the scene. He was sprayed with capsicum foam, which had no effect. He then rushed at one officer with a knife and was shot once in the chest. The father is then believed to have fought with medical staff as they tried to take him to hospital, where he later died. Police Commander Doug Fryer confirmed the man who was shot was Luke’s father, and said they were dealing with an “absolute tragedy”. Luke’s mother Rosie Batty, who is originally from England, was at the cricket ground when her son was killed. She told reporters in Australia that Luke, who was a keen footballer as well as a cricket player, had begged for a few more minutes with his father who he rarely saw at the end of the training session. “What triggered this was a case of his dad having mental health issues,” Ms Batty told Channel Nine. “He was in a homelessness situation for many years, his life was failing, everything was becoming worse in his life, and Luke was the only bright light in his life. “No one loved Luke more than his father. No one loved Luke more than me – we both loved him.” Later, in an interview outside her home, she told the Herald Sun she was in “shock, disbelief”, but was being supported by family and friends, and her family were on their way over to Australia from England. She said: “What I want to share with you is: I’m the victim of family violence, and if anything come out of this, I want it to be a lesson to everybody. “Luke was at cricket practice and I believed he was safe.” “I don’t think anyone really understood or understands what someone is able to do. And so, as a sane person, or as a caring parent, you trust the very person who killed him, loved him, and they did love him, they loved him more than anyone else.” She told how she had initially believed Luke had been accidentally injured in a “bowling accident” by his father, and it was only later she was told by police and paramedics that he had been deliberately injured. She went on to say it was a “tragic situation that no one could see was going to happen”.