ON THIS DAY – March 6, 1925


His Honour, Sir Leo Cussen, in the Criminal Court, sentenced Edward Vernon (39), painter, who was found guilty, of the manslaughter of William Bent (17), railway employee, at Lilydale on the 6th of March, to 12 years’ imprisonment with hard labour. Sir Leo Cussen said he took the jury’s verdict as meaning no more than that Vernon did not intend to hit the unfortunate boy he killed. The fact that Vernon followed the boy and girl, who was his companion, for some distance, so that the meeting was not accidental, made the crime more serious. He had some hesitation as to whether he could impose the maximum penalty, but he took into consideration the fact that Vernon had borne a good character, and that he appeared to have an emotional and unstable nature. Vernon took the sentence calmly.



ON THIS DAY – February 7, 1875


John Nicholson aged 20, a soda water manufacturer in Carlton, was shot and murdered on this day in 1875, by Philip Dobel in Lilydale. Nicholson had gone to Lilydale on the 6th in company with a men named Bowie with a load of soda waters. They were drinking with Dobel and some others in a wine-shop, kept by a man named Slater. A dispute arose, and Dobel went to his house for a gun, and returning fired at the deceased and inflicted such injuries that he died in a very short time. The deceased was a remarkably powerful young man, much liked by his comrades, and said to be of a quiet disposition.