Posts

ON THIS DAY …….5th August 1946

Bleeding from extensive knife wounds in the forearm, John Kickert, 65, Dutchman, staggered into a confectionery shop at Fairfield at 8pm, on this day in 1946, and slumped into a chair and died. The main arteries in Kickert’s arm had been severed and apparently he bled to death. As he entered the shop, Kickert produced a knife with a 16-inch razor-like blade and said to the proprietress, Mrs. Valda Wild, ‘Look, Miss.’ Police followed the trail of blood from the shop for more than 300 yards to a house in Gillies Street, where Kickert lived with his wife and daughter. They found the house in disorder. Every window in the house had been smashed, and there was evidence a violent struggle. They were told a quarrel had occurred between Kickert and a man. , Kickert had called at Mrs. Wild’s shop at 6.45pm. He was then bleeding from face and head injuries, arid alleged he had been beaten’ up. He asked Mrs. Wild to telephone, the police, and two con constables came to the shop. They then accompanied Kickert back to his home,, and police, thinking there would be no further trouble, left Kickert at the house. Later police were told that there was another quarrel in which Kickert received the death wound. Police are searching for a man.

 

ON THIS DAY – JULY 25, 1916

Antoine Picone the Italian who shot and killed Joseph Luricella, a compatriot, in Queen Victoria Market on July 25, was hanged in Melbourne Gaol. Picone had been attended until the last minute by Father J. Donovan, and when led on to the scaffold carried his hand a small photograph and a paper containing a lock of hair. He asked that they might be buried with him. The sheriff promised him the request would be granted, and then asked him if he had anything further to say. Picone said something in a low, inaudible tone. The lever was then released, Death was instantaneous. Luricella was shot through the head with an automatic revolver as the result of a quarrel with Picone. The tragedy occurred in the early morning.

ON THIS DAY – July 9, 1870

In Bailie-street, Hotham, for the last three or four years, there has been residing a fisherman, named Patrick Smith, a married man, with one child— aged fourteen years of age. Both husband and wife, since they have resided in the locality, have been addicted to drink, and continued scenes of debauchery have been witnessed by the neighbours. On one occasion he is known to have stripped her naked on a bleak wintry night, and then placed her under the water-tap until she was almost perished with cold. At other times brutal beatings have been inflicted; but with the weakness of most women, the wife refused to take any proceedings against her husband, although she has expressed to her neighbours the conviction that he would murder her sometime or other. Of Smith’s character beyond his having been twice locked up for drunkenness, and these repented ill-usages of his wife, the police have no previous cognisance. He worked as a fisherman in the Yarra and Saltwater rivers, and has told neighbours that he could make £1 per day with the set lines and other appliances he possessed. The lad, who was the son of that unfortunate pair, was, until lately, employed at a soap factory, but the father took him away from that in order to benefit by his assistance in his fishery operations. These then are the antecedents of the persons connected with the brutal tragedy perpetrated on Saturday.

On Friday one of the usual scenes of debauchery commenced, and continued until night, when the parties seem to have gone to bed. In the morning the quarrel was resumed, and a Mrs Jane Sloane, a widow residing next door, states that it continued ‘on and off’ all day. She saw Mary Smith about 5 o’clock in the evening getting water at the tap, and when she went in Mrs. Sloane heard a heavy fall and some blows struck. Mrs. Smith did not utter a word, and Mrs. Sloane then heard Smith say, ‘ Get up you , or I will murder you. He must then have become sensible of what he had done, for Mrs. Sloane heard a, noise as if he were shaking his wife, and then he cried, ‘Mary, Mary, do get up.’ There was no one in the house at the time, and Mrs. Sloane had previously heard Smith go in by the front door, and lock it after him. Poor Mrs. Smith was never seen alive again after these blows were struck, but on account of the previous continual quarrelling, the neighbours took very little notice of what was going on.

On Saturday night, Smith went to the Hotham police-station, and informed Sergeant McCreig that his wife was dead and bleeding, but he did not know how it occurred. He was then to all appearance perfectly sober, and must have occupied the time between 6 o’clock and 10 o’clock in recovering his senses. The officer went with him to the house, and there found the unfortunate Mary Smith dead and nearly cold, weltering on the floor in her own blood, and with a horrible gash right across the forehead. The face, arms, and all the upper part of the body were tearfully bruised and mangled. The miserable murderer appears to have tried to remedy the evil he had done, for the body was lying on its side with a, pillow under the head, the right hand across the chest, and the legs drawn up. On the wound across the forehead was a quantity of bread, apparently put there with a view of stopping the bleeding. The room presented a fearful appearance. Of furniture there was but very little, and that of the most miserable description. The floor and the walls were covered with blood, and the body of the poor woman seemed to have been dragged from where she fell alongside the wall into the middle of the room. In one corner was a saucepan with the handle broken off and this handle was found elsewhere in the room, covered with gore, hair, and skin. It was most probably the instrument used in the commission of the fearful deed. About the room were also about a dozen pieces of wood, which had at one time apparently been but two pieces, but had been broken up by the man striking the deceased with them. Like the iron saucepan handle, they were covered with blood, hair and skin.  Altogether a more awful picture could hardly be imagined; and it was evident that before the last fatal wound was inflicted, the murdered woman was beaten about in a horrible manner. Sergeant McCreig having examined the room at once arrested the husband Smith for the murder of his wife; and on examination found that his trousers and other garments were besmeared with blood. The wretched murderer having recovered his senses seemed stunned by his crime, but persistently states he remembers nothing about it.

ON THIS DAY – June 7, 1910

An inquest was held to-day concerning the death of William Hulme, assistant master at the Mount Alexander road State school, who died suddenly after a quarrel with Major Peter Robin, head master, on June 7. Verne Begg assistant teacher at the school, said he heard some words between deceased and Major Robin. A few minutes after Hulme rushed into the class-room, where the teachers wore lunching, and exclaimed: ‘I want you girls to look what that man has done to me. I went to his office, and asked for an explanation. I put my back to the door, and said: ‘Lay a hand one me, and I will smash you to bits.’ Then he laid his hands on me, and threw me against the door.’ In a statement to the police Major Robin said he had not struck deceased, but pulled him by the coat, using only sufficient force to clear him from the doorway: Medical evidence was given that death was due to acute heart failure. The Coroner said there was no doubt in his mind that some violence was used. He considered that Peter Robin was accountable for the death of deceased, and committed him for trial on a charge of manslaughter.

On This Day ……. 19th April 1930

In the Geelong Supreme Court on this day in 1930, Erie Harris Brockwell aged 24, was charged with having murdered Horace Thomas Walpole on the 28th of April 1929. Walpole’s body was found in his motor car on the Queenscliff-road. There were injuries to the head, and a post mortem examination disclosed a bullet in the brain. Walpole had been shot from behind. Senior Detective Siekerdick said that when he interviewed Brockwell on the 29th April, Brockwell admitted that he fired two shots at Walpole. Witness added that Brockwell asked to be “saved from the rope”. He did not mind doing 15 years. Walpole had called him a gaol bird, and he (Brockwell) had fired at him. Brockwell later signed a statement in which he admitted having killed Walpole. Brockwell, in a statement from the dock, said that he was too drunk to remember the incident. He had intended to kill himself, because he was depressed and in ill-health. He engaged Walpole to drive him to Queenscliff, and there had been a quarrel, but he had not fired to hit. The jury returned a verdict of manslaughter, and Brockwell was sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment. “The jury took a very lenient view,” remarked the Chief Justice, in passing sentence. Brockwell was sent to Geelong Gaol and released in 1941.

 

ON THIS DAY …….5th August 1946

 

Bleeding from extensive knife wounds in the forearm, John Kickert, 65, Dutchman, staggered into a confectionery shop at Fairfield at 8pm, on this day in 1946, and slumped into a chair and died. The main arteries in Kickert’s arm had been severed and apparently he bled to death. As he entered the shop, Kickert produced a knife with a 16-inch razor-like blade and said to the proprietress, Mrs. Valda Wild, ‘Look, Miss.’ Police followed the trail of blood from the shop for more than 300 yards to a house in Gillies Street, where Kickert lived with his wife and daughter. They found the house in disorder. Every window in the house had been smashed, and there was evidence a violent struggle. They were told a quarrel had occurred between Kickert and a man. , Kickert had called at Mrs. Wild’s shop at 6.45pm. He was then bleeding from face and head injuries, arid alleged he had been beaten’ up. He asked Mrs. Wild to telephone, the police, and two con constables came to the shop. They then accompanied Kickert back to his home,, and police, thinking there would be no further trouble, left Kickert at the house. Later police were told that there was another quarrel in which Kickert received the death wound. Police are searching for a man.

 

ON THIS DAY – JULY 25, 1916

Antoine Picone the Italian who shot and killed Joseph Luricella, a compatriot, in Queen Victoria Market on July 25, was hanged in Melbourne Gaol. Picone had been attended until the last minute by Father J. Donovan, and when led on to the scaffold carried his hand a small photograph and a paper containing a lock of hair. He asked that they might be buried with him. The sheriff promised him the request would be granted, and then asked him if he had anything further to say. Picone said something in a low, inaudible tone. The lever was then released, Death was instantaneous. Luricella was shot through the head with an automatic revolver as the result of a quarrel with Picone. The tragedy occurred in the early morning.

ON THIS DAY – July 9, 1870

In Bailie-street, Hotham, for the last three or four years, there has been residing a fisherman, named Patrick Smith, a married man, with one child— aged fourteen years of age. Both husband and wife, since they have resided in the locality, have been addicted to drink, and continued scenes of debauchery have been witnessed by the neighbours. On one occasion he is known to have stripped her naked on a bleak wintry night, and then placed her under the water-tap until she was almost perished with cold. At other times brutal beatings have been inflicted; but with the weakness of most women, the wife refused to take any proceedings against her husband, although she has expressed to her neighbours the conviction that he would murder her sometime or other. Of Smith’s character beyond his having been twice locked up for drunkenness, and these repented ill-usages of his wife, the police have no previous cognisance. He worked as a fisherman in the Yarra and Saltwater rivers, and has told neighbours that he could make £1 per day with the set lines and other appliances he possessed. The lad, who was the son of that unfortunate pair, was, until lately, employed at a soap factory, but the father took him away from that in order to benefit by his assistance in his fishery operations. These then are the antecedents of the persons connected with the brutal tragedy perpetrated on Saturday.

On Friday one of the usual scenes of debauchery commenced, and continued until night, when the parties seem to have gone to bed. In the morning the quarrel was resumed, and a Mrs Jane Sloane, a widow residing next door, states that it continued ‘on and off’ all day. She saw Mary Smith about 5 o’clock in the evening getting water at the tap, and when she went in Mrs. Sloane heard a heavy fall and some blows struck. Mrs. Smith did not utter a word, and Mrs. Sloane then heard Smith say, ‘ Get up you , or I will murder you. He must then have become sensible of what he had done, for Mrs. Sloane heard a, noise as if he were shaking his wife, and then he cried, ‘Mary, Mary, do get up.’ There was no one in the house at the time, and Mrs. Sloane had previously heard Smith go in by the front door, and lock it after him. Poor Mrs. Smith was never seen alive again after these blows were struck, but on account of the previous continual quarrelling, the neighbours took very little notice of what was going on.

On Saturday night, Smith went to the Hotham police-station, and informed Sergeant McCreig that his wife was dead and bleeding, but he did not know how it occurred. He was then to all appearance perfectly sober, and must have occupied the time between 6 o’clock and 10 o’clock in recovering his senses. The officer went with him to the house, and there found the unfortunate Mary Smith dead and nearly cold, weltering on the floor in her own blood, and with a horrible gash right across the forehead. The face, arms, and all the upper part of the body were tearfully bruised and mangled. The miserable murderer appears to have tried to remedy the evil he had done, for the body was lying on its side with a, pillow under the head, the right hand across the chest, and the legs drawn up. On the wound across the forehead was a quantity of bread, apparently put there with a view of stopping the bleeding. The room presented a fearful appearance. Of furniture there was but very little, and that of the most miserable description. The floor and the walls were covered with blood, and the body of the poor woman seemed to have been dragged from where she fell alongside the wall into the middle of the room. In one corner was a saucepan with the handle broken off and this handle was found elsewhere in the room, covered with gore, hair, and skin. It was most probably the instrument used in the commission of the fearful deed. About the room were also about a dozen pieces of wood, which had at one time apparently been but two pieces, but had been broken up by the man striking the deceased with them. Like the iron saucepan handle, they were covered with blood, hair and skin.  Altogether a more awful picture could hardly be imagined; and it was evident that before the last fatal wound was inflicted, the murdered woman was beaten about in a horrible manner. Sergeant McCreig having examined the room at once arrested the husband Smith for the murder of his wife; and on examination found that his trousers and other garments were besmeared with blood. The wretched murderer having recovered his senses seemed stunned by his crime, but persistently states he remembers nothing about it.

ON THIS DAY – June 7, 1910

An inquest was held to-day concerning the death of William Hulme, assistant master at the Mount Alexander road State school, who died suddenly after a quarrel with Major Peter Robin, head master, on June 7. Verne Begg assistant teacher at the school, said he heard some words between deceased and Major Robin. A few minutes after Hulme rushed into the class-room, where the teachers wore lunching, and exclaimed: ‘I want you girls to look what that man has done to me. I went to his office, and asked for an explanation. I put my back to the door, and said: ‘Lay a hand one me, and I will smash you to bits.’ Then he laid his hands on me, and threw me against the door.’ In a statement to the police Major Robin said he had not struck deceased, but pulled him by the coat, using only sufficient force to clear him from the doorway: Medical evidence was given that death was due to acute heart failure. The Coroner said there was no doubt in his mind that some violence was used. He considered that Peter Robin was accountable for the death of deceased, and committed him for trial on a charge of manslaughter.

On This Day ……. 19th April 1930

In the Geelong Supreme Court on this day in 1930, Erie Harris Brockwell aged 24, was charged with having murdered Horace Thomas Walpole on the 28th of April 1929. Walpole’s body was found in his motor car on the Queenscliff-road. There were injuries to the head, and a post mortem examination disclosed a bullet in the brain. Walpole had been shot from behind. Senior Detective Siekerdick said that when he interviewed Brockwell on the 29th April, Brockwell admitted that he fired two shots at Walpole. Witness added that Brockwell asked to be “saved from the rope”. He did not mind doing 15 years. Walpole had called him a gaol bird, and he (Brockwell) had fired at him. Brockwell later signed a statement in which he admitted having killed Walpole. Brockwell, in a statement from the dock, said that he was too drunk to remember the incident. He had intended to kill himself, because he was depressed and in ill-health. He engaged Walpole to drive him to Queenscliff, and there had been a quarrel, but he had not fired to hit. The jury returned a verdict of manslaughter, and Brockwell was sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment. “The jury took a very lenient view,” remarked the Chief Justice, in passing sentence. Brockwell was sent to Geelong Gaol and released in 1941.

 

ON THIS DAY – January 19, 1884

Charles Rice was placed on his trial for the murder of his wife, Bridget Rice on January 19th, 1884. On the day stated, Mrs. Rice wanted to go out, but her husband forbid her. She insisted upon carrying out her intentions, and on leaving the house a quarrel started, during which time the prisoner picked up a piece of wood with which he beat his wife so violently her face was fractured so bad that she died. The jury returned a verdict of guilty of manslaughter.

ON THIS DAY …….5th August 1946

 

Bleeding from extensive knife wounds in the forearm, John Kickert, 65, Dutchman, staggered into a confectionery shop at Fairfield at 8pm, on this day in 1946, and slumped into a chair and died. The main arteries in Kickert’s arm had been severed and apparently he bled to death. As he entered the shop, Kickert produced a knife with a 16-inch razor-like blade and said to the proprietress, Mrs. Valda Wild, ‘Look, Miss.’ Police followed the trail of blood from the shop for more than 300 yards to a house in Gillies Street, where Kickert lived with his wife and daughter. They found the house in disorder. Every window in the house had been smashed, and there was evidence a violent struggle. They were told a quarrel had occurred between Kickert and a man. , Kickert had called at Mrs. Wild’s shop at 6.45pm. He was then bleeding from face and head injuries, arid alleged he had been beaten’ up. He asked Mrs. Wild to telephone, the police, and two con constables came to the shop. They then accompanied Kickert back to his home,, and police, thinking there would be no further trouble, left Kickert at the house. Later police were told that there was another quarrel in which Kickert received the death wound. Police are searching for a man.