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ON THIS DAY….. 10th July 1910

The trial of Peter Long on a charge of murder, arising out of the death, at Ballarat, on July 10, of Florence Jelbart, was continued in the Melbourne Criminal Court, October 28. Dr. Crawford Henry Mollison, Government pathologist, said:-I heard Dr. Champion’s evidence on the previous day, and from that and from my examination of the parts I am of opinion that death was not due to air embolism, but to shock. Professor H. B. Allen (dean of the faculty of medicine in the University of Melbourne) and Dr. Frank Reginald Longden (of Buninyong) expressed a similar view. This concluded the case for the Crown. Peter Long, the accused, said his Chinese name was Lee Yee. He had been practising in and around Ballarat for 13 years. On the night of July 10, he left the deceased in his consulting-room while he went into the shop. A few minutes afterwards he heard a scream, and rushed into the consulting room. He then found her lying on the floor of the room, and she died soon after. He did nothing to the girl to cause her death. Dr. William Edward Davis, who attended the post-mortem examination conducted by Dr. Champion, said he thought the condition of the heart was inconsistent with death by shock. The wounds could have been self-inflicted. Drs. R. A. Stirling (of Melbourne) and G. E. Cussen (of Ballarat) gave evidence to a similar effect. The hearing of the case was concluded when the jury, after a retirement of two hours, found Long not guilty, and he was acquitted.

ON THIS DAY – November 9, 1924

 

At the Melbourne Criminal Court on March 26 the jury returned a verdict of not guilty in the case of Albert James Barter (41), carter, who was charged with the murder of his mother-in-law, Mrs. Catherine Dawson, widow, at Yallourn, on November 9. On that date the woman was found mutilated and dead in her hut, and near her was a tomahawk, with which it was believed she had been done to death.

 

On This Day – October 2, 1897

The trial of Jane Agnes Sutcliffe, an elderly woman, for the murder of Eleanor Mary Gardiner on October 2, took place at the Melbourne Criminal Court before Mr Justice Hood yesterday.  Under the name of Mrs Page, Miss Gardiner, who was 22 years of age, was admitted to the Women’s Hospital in September last.  She appeared to be suffering from the effects of the illegal operation and died on October 2.   When told her death was imminent, she told Dr Chenall her real name was Gardiner and that she had been operated on by Mrs Sutcliffe.  The latter was arrested and her house searched but no instruments were found.  Mr Forlonge, who defended the prisoner, warned the jury against accepting the dying statements of people made behind the backs of accused persons who had no opportunity of cross examination.  He also pointed out that if the woman were guilty she would have hardly have sent the patient to the hospital, as by doing so detection would probably follow.

The jury returned a verdict of murder and Mr Justice Hood passed sentence of death.  The woman showed great firmness in the dock.

ON THIS DAY….. 10th July 1910

The trial of Peter Long on a charge of murder, arising out of the death, at Ballarat, on July 10, of Florence Jelbart, was continued in the Melbourne Criminal Court, October 28. Dr. Crawford Henry Mollison, Government pathologist, said:-I heard Dr. Champion’s evidence on the previous day, and from that and from my examination of the parts I am of opinion that death was not due to air embolism, but to shock. Professor H. B. Allen (dean of the faculty of medicine in the University of Melbourne) and Dr. Frank Reginald Longden (of Buninyong) expressed a similar view. This concluded the case for the Crown. Peter Long, the accused, said his Chinese name was Lee Yee. He had been practising in and around Ballarat for 13 years. On the night of July 10, he left the deceased in his consulting-room while he went into the shop. A few minutes afterwards he heard a scream, and rushed into the consulting room. He then found her lying on the floor of the room, and she died soon after. He did nothing to the girl to cause her death. Dr. William Edward Davis, who attended the post-mortem examination conducted by Dr. Champion, said he thought the condition of the heart was inconsistent with death by shock. The wounds could have been self-inflicted. Drs. R. A. Stirling (of Melbourne) and G. E. Cussen (of Ballarat) gave evidence to a similar effect. The hearing of the case was concluded when the jury, after a retirement of two hours, found Long not guilty, and he was acquitted.

ON THIS DAY …….. 6th April 1929

CHILD’S STORY IN COURT – FITZROY

The circumstances of a tragedy in a house in Little Gore-street, Fitzroy, on this day in 1929, were narrated by Peggy Lilian Turner, a 9 year old girl, in the Melbourne Criminal Court. Arthur Cable Sullivan, aged 29, was charged with the murder of Ellen Turner by slashing her with a razor. The child said that she saw Sullivan take a razor from a shelf in the kitchen. Sullivan, whom she described as “Uncle Arthur,” told her to go upstairs. She heard Sullivan and her mother quarrelling, and looking into the bedroom she saw Sullivan fighting her mother. He was holding her against the wall trying to get at her throat. Sullivan, when he saw her, said “Get out, or I will chuck you out ” She went to the front door, but it was locked. Returning to the bedroom, she saw her mother lying on the floor bleeding. Later Sullivan said to her: “If anyone asks you about this, tell them that your mother fell on a broken bottle,” Sullivan said that Mrs. Turner was the first to get the razor. He thought she intended to do herself an injury, and tried to take it from her. He broke the blade against the wall, and a piece of it struck Mrs. Turner on the arm, severing the arteries. He had no intention of injuring her. When she saw her arm was bleeding she said to him, “Say I did it on a place of glass.”The jury announced that they desired to hear no further evidence. They returned a verdict of not guilty of either murder or manslaughter.

 

EXECUTED ON THIS DAY ………. 23rd of March 1891

John Wilson, age 23 was executed in Old Melbourne gaol

John Wilson, a tram conductor, was engaged to 24-year-old domestic servant Stella Leah Marks. On the 24th of January 1891, he saw her walking arm in arm with another man in Bourke street and on seeing this he became jealous. On the next day he demanded an explanation, and some words passed between them. In the evening, he accompanied her to her home at Clifton Hill and asked her to go for a walk. He again demanded explanation about the other man and became enraged. Wilson would cut her throat, killing her instantly. Then he tried to commit suicide, but lacked courage to do so. He was charged with murder, stood trial at the Melbourne Criminal Court and was convicted and sentenced to death on the 25th of February 1891. Wilson was hanged at Melbourne gaol at 10am on the 23rd of March 1891.

 

 

EXECUTED ON THIS DAY ………. 16th of March 1891

John Thomas Phelan, aged 30 was executed in the Old Melbourne gaol

John Thomas Phelan, an engine driver on the railways, had been cohabiting with 25-year-old Ada Hatton for two years, when she left him, presumably for another man. On the 15th of January 1891 Phelan found Miss Hatton at her new home at South Yarra alone, and cut her throat from ear to ear with a table knife. He was in the act of cutting his own throat, when some neighbours rushed on the scene and prevented him. He was charged with murder and stood trial at Melbourne Criminal Court. He was convicted and sentenced to death on the 23rd of February 1891, the jury recommending him to mercy on the ground that he had received great provocation. Phelan was hanged at Melbourne gaol on the 16th of March 1891.

 

 

ON THIS DAY – November 9, 1924

 

At the Melbourne Criminal Court on March 26 the jury returned a verdict of not guilty in the case of Albert James Barter (41), carter, who was charged with the murder of his mother-in-law, Mrs. Catherine Dawson, widow, at Yallourn, on November 9. On that date the woman was found mutilated and dead in her hut, and near her was a tomahawk, with which it was believed she had been done to death.

 

On This Day – October 2, 1897

The trial of Jane Agnes Sutcliffe, an elderly woman, for the murder of Eleanor Mary Gardiner on October 2, took place at the Melbourne Criminal Court before Mr Justice Hood yesterday.  Under the name of Mrs Page, Miss Gardiner, who was 22 years of age, was admitted to the Women’s Hospital in September last.  She appeared to be suffering from the effects of the illegal operation and died on October 2.   When told her death was imminent, she told Dr Chenall her real name was Gardiner and that she had been operated on by Mrs Sutcliffe.  The latter was arrested and her house searched but no instruments were found.  Mr Forlonge, who defended the prisoner, warned the jury against accepting the dying statements of people made behind the backs of accused persons who had no opportunity of cross examination.  He also pointed out that if the woman were guilty she would have hardly have sent the patient to the hospital, as by doing so detection would probably follow.

The jury returned a verdict of murder and Mr Justice Hood passed sentence of death.  The woman showed great firmness in the dock.

ON THIS DAY….. 10th July 1910

The trial of Peter Long on a charge of murder, arising out of the death, at Ballarat, on July 10, of Florence Jelbart, was continued in the Melbourne Criminal Court, October 28. Dr. Crawford Henry Mollison, Government pathologist, said:-I heard Dr. Champion’s evidence on the previous day, and from that and from my examination of the parts I am of opinion that death was not due to air embolism, but to shock. Professor H. B. Allen (dean of the faculty of medicine in the University of Melbourne) and Dr. Frank Reginald Longden (of Buninyong) expressed a similar view. This concluded the case for the Crown. Peter Long, the accused, said his Chinese name was Lee Yee. He had been practising in and around Ballarat for 13 years. On the night of July 10, he left the deceased in his consulting-room while he went into the shop. A few minutes afterwards he heard a scream, and rushed into the consulting room. He then found her lying on the floor of the room, and she died soon after. He did nothing to the girl to cause her death. Dr. William Edward Davis, who attended the post-mortem examination conducted by Dr. Champion, said he thought the condition of the heart was inconsistent with death by shock. The wounds could have been self-inflicted. Drs. R. A. Stirling (of Melbourne) and G. E. Cussen (of Ballarat) gave evidence to a similar effect. The hearing of the case was concluded when the jury, after a retirement of two hours, found Long not guilty, and he was acquitted.

ON THIS DAY …….. 6th April 1929

CHILD’S STORY IN COURT – FITZROY

The circumstances of a tragedy in a house in Little Gore-street, Fitzroy, on this day in 1929, were narrated by Peggy Lilian Turner, a 9 year old girl, in the Melbourne Criminal Court. Arthur Cable Sullivan, aged 29, was charged with the murder of Ellen Turner by slashing her with a razor. The child said that she saw Sullivan take a razor from a shelf in the kitchen. Sullivan, whom she described as “Uncle Arthur,” told her to go upstairs. She heard Sullivan and her mother quarrelling, and looking into the bedroom she saw Sullivan fighting her mother. He was holding her against the wall trying to get at her throat. Sullivan, when he saw her, said “Get out, or I will chuck you out ” She went to the front door, but it was locked. Returning to the bedroom, she saw her mother lying on the floor bleeding. Later Sullivan said to her: “If anyone asks you about this, tell them that your mother fell on a broken bottle,” Sullivan said that Mrs. Turner was the first to get the razor. He thought she intended to do herself an injury, and tried to take it from her. He broke the blade against the wall, and a piece of it struck Mrs. Turner on the arm, severing the arteries. He had no intention of injuring her. When she saw her arm was bleeding she said to him, “Say I did it on a place of glass.”The jury announced that they desired to hear no further evidence. They returned a verdict of not guilty of either murder or manslaughter.

 

EXECUTED ON THIS DAY ………. 23rd of March 1891

John Wilson, age 23 was executed in Old Melbourne gaol

John Wilson, a tram conductor, was engaged to 24-year-old domestic servant Stella Leah Marks. On the 24th of January 1891, he saw her walking arm in arm with another man in Bourke street and on seeing this he became jealous. On the next day he demanded an explanation, and some words passed between them. In the evening, he accompanied her to her home at Clifton Hill and asked her to go for a walk. He again demanded explanation about the other man and became enraged. Wilson would cut her throat, killing her instantly. Then he tried to commit suicide, but lacked courage to do so. He was charged with murder, stood trial at the Melbourne Criminal Court and was convicted and sentenced to death on the 25th of February 1891. Wilson was hanged at Melbourne gaol at 10am on the 23rd of March 1891.