ON THIS DAY – October 30, 1992

A jealous husband who shot dead a man he mistakenly believed to be his estranged wife’s lover was found guilty yesterday of murder.  The trial heard that Frank Allan Garner, 53, an electrician, formerly of suburban Avonsleigh, had, after making threats to his ex-wife Beverley, burst into the offices where she worked armed with a loaded pump action shotgun.  Garner fired two shots before cornering his wife and two men in an office of Underwater Video Systems in outer suburban Boronia on October 30,1992. He shot dead the firm’s operations manager Graham Paul Mather, 42. The head of the firm, Russell Priest, 41, was wounded in the arm and thigh.  The court heard Garner then attacked Beverley Garner, choking her with his hands and attempting to gouge her eyes.  Garner was disarmed by the wounded Mr Priest and overpowered by workers from nearby firms.  He also was found guilty of attempting to murder Mr Priest, intentionally or recklessly causing serious injury to Mrs Garner, and threatening to kill her.

ON THIS DAY – October 28, 1933


Ellen Maud Holmes married, Grey street South Yarra was charged at the Prahran Court on Friday, with having on October 28 wounded Christopher Green with intent to commit murder. Christopher Green, painter, Simmonds street, South Yarra, said that about 9 p m on October 28, he was about to enter a house in Williams road, Toorak, when he heard a shot and a bullet entered his left arm. He ran into Woodside crescent and saw Mrs.Holmes following him, carrying a rifle. He grappled with her and she struck him on the forehead with the stock of the gun, but eventually he wrested it from her. He was admitted to the Alfred Hospital. Mrs. Holmes had been a tenant for 13 years in a house which he owned in Grey street. Detective B. H. Cavanagh of the police wireless patrol, said that with other police he interviewed Mrs. Holmes at her residence at 2 a.m on October 28. In a written statement which she signed, she said that although she had paid her rent regularly during the 13 years in which she had been a tenant of Green’s house she had fallen in arrears for one week owing to the illness of her daughter. As Green owed her a small amount, she refused to pay the week’s rent until he deducted this amount. He sent her a notice to quit, however, and she became desperate.  Mrs. Holmes who pleaded not guilty, was committed for trial at the sittings of the Supreme Court, to begin on December 4. Bail was allowed in a surety of £300 and a personal bond of £300.

ON THIS DAY – October 28, 1917


At the Rutherglen Coroner’s Court to day Joseph Butler was committed for trial on a change of having murdered Samuel Costin, his step-father, at Gooramadda on October 28. Edward Butler, the accused’s brother, said that on the day of Costin’s death he heard a shot, and thought he heard the old man call out, “You have shot me” In the kitchen afterwards his brother Joe handed witness 8/ in silver. Joe said, “The old chap is lying out there and it is out of his pocket, and this is half of what I got” His brother said he had only given the old man a fright, and that he was always growling at him. Another witness stated that accused had come to pay the balance for the purchase of a mare with bank notes which were perforated with holes.



ON THIS DAY – October 27, 1915


At the Morgue on Saturday, Dr. Cole, P M , city coroner, investigated the shooting tragedy at a house in Nelson street, Abbotsford, on October 27. After a quarrel, William Green, aged 32 years shot Eileen Veronica McCormack, aged 25 years, his housekeeper, who died instantly. Green then committed suicide. Mary Green, of Docker street, Richmond, said that William Green was her son. On the day of the shooting Green asked his housekeeper to come inside, as he wanted to speak to her. McCormack refused. Green took her by the arm and pulled her inside. He then caught her by the throat, and it seemed as if he was strangling her. Mrs. Green tried to pull him away and struck him over the face. Green caught hold of McCormack’s legs and threw her on the ground. Mrs. Green at once left to obtain help. During her absence shots were fired. The bedroom was full of smoke, and Green and McCormack were found dead on the floor. McCormack’s infant was sitting beside its mother, playing with the revolver.  It was stated that Green was a married man, living apart from his wife, and McCormack a married woman, living apart from her husband. Dr. Cole found that the deceased died from gun shot wounds. He was of the opinion that the shots were fired by Green but there was not sufficient evidence to show his state of mind at the time.



ON THIS DAY – October 26, 1929


Eric Pike (15 1/2)was committed for trial by the Coroner on a charge of willfully murdering a farmer named John Willam Smith (36), at Werrimull on October 26. Smith’s body was found in some timber about a mile from his home. There were indications that he had been dragged some distance behind a cart. He had 11 bullet wounds in the head and body.

ON THIS DAY – October 25, 1942


Arnold Porter (15) was committed for trial on a charge or murder at Koroit today after the Deputy Coroner had inquired into the death, of John Murphy, of Koroit, on October 25. Murphy’s body was found in a paddock. He had been wounded by pea rifle.



ON THIS DAY – October 21, 1929


At the city court on Tuesday Basil Alfred Harrison, aged 27, was charged with having murdered Charles Harrison at Alphington on October 21. Senior-detective William Percival Jones ,said:–Early this morning I arrested Harrison on this charge. Charles Harrison was his father. It is alleged that late last night, after an altercation had taken place, the father having knocked the mother and daughter about, they called on the son to protect them. The son took a single-barrelled gun and shot the father in the neck and chest. I ask for a remand for eight days pending further inquiries. Harrison was remanded to appear at the City Court on October 30. Bail was fixed at £500, with one surety of a similar amount,



ON THIS DAY – October 21, 1898


At the Ballarat City Court to-day William Blomely, aged 18, and Alfred Blomely, aged 15, were charged with the murder of their father, George Blomely, on October 21. The facts of the case have already been published, and the medical evidence tendered to day was to the effect that death was due to softening of the brain and other injuries, caused by a fracture of the right frontal bone by a bullet, and that death was accelerated by chronic alcoholism.



MURDERED ON THIS DAY ………. 20th of October 2003

A $200,000 was offered to help solve a double murder in Victoria. Istvan (Steve) Gulyas and Duang Chith (Tina) Nhonthachith were killed at their farm in Wildwood Road, Wildwood, northwest of Melbourne, sometime on the 20th of October 2003.

Both were shot in the head. Homicide detectives said the couple did not have a criminal history and it is believed the victims knew their killers. Detective Inspector Bernie Edwards said the $200,000 reward could hold the key to unlocking crucial information surrounding their deaths. “We believe there are people in the community who are in possession of vital information regarding this murder,” he said. “A significant reward of $200,000 we hope will encourage anybody who knows anything about this incident to come forward.” The reward will be paid for information leading to the arrest and subsequent conviction of those responsible. The Director of Public Prosecutions will also consider granting indemnity to anyone who helps solve the murders.




ON THIS DAY ………. 20th of October 1999

Gerardo Mannella aged 31 was gunned down in a volley of shots outside his brother Salvatore’s home in North Fitzroy on the 20th of October, 1999. Mannella was chased about 50 metres by two gunmen who waited in ambush for five hours. He was believed to have been killed by rivals who thought he planned to avenge brother’s, Vincenzo Mannella murder. They were picked up by a third man in a dark Ford station wagon.




ON THIS DAY – October 17, 1933


In the Criminal Court today, Mr. Justice Walsey imposed sentence of seven years’ imprisonment with hard labour on Percy Horatio Sydney Barnard, theatre commissionaire, of Cheltenham, for the manslaughter of Percival Smith on October 17. Barnard shot Smith through the heart outside Smith’s home, where Barnard was a boarder. Mr. Smith, widow of the dead man. was charged with having been an accessory after the fact of murder, but she was found not guilty.

ON THIS DAY – October 14, 1917


Bertha Silk (59), a married woman, was admitted to the Melbourne Hospital late on October 14, with two bullet wounds in the back. She was found lying near the front gate of her home, and later the dead body of Frederick Silk (74), her husband, was discovered by the police in the back yard, with a bullet through the breast, and his clothing smouldering. The attention of neighbours had then been attracted by the sound of shots. They sent for the police, who discovered the tragedy. Silk had a six-chambered revolver clutched in his hand, and four shots had been fired from it. The woman made a statement to the effect that while she was in her bedroom her husband came in, and immediately fired at her. She then ran to the front gate, where she was struck by a second shot. She added that there had been quarrels between herself and her husband in the past. He had objected to her undertaking poultry-rearing, and on the day of the tragedy there had been a dispute about a fowl which was sitting on some eggs. He threw the bird off the nest several times, and on each occasion she put it back. The couple had lived at Bayswater for several years. Silk was a Canadian by birth, and his son is on active service in France.