ON THIS DAY…….. 16th of March 1955

A barroom quarrel following slighting references to a man’s wife preceded a fatal shooting, two witnesses told the Supreme Court. The husband, Allan Stewart McLean, 41, carpenter, of Kyabram, is charged with murder. The other man Thomas Young “Larry” Smith, aged 28, builder, of Lord st., Richmond, was shot in the stomach at Kyabram on March the 16th. His injuries were caused by a pea-rifle bullet, McLean pleaded not guilty. William Augustine Hurley, hotel licensee, of Kyabram, said his attention was called to trouble in the bar at 5.45pm on March the 16th. He heard McLean say to Smith: “I would not drink with you,” to which Smith replied, “The trouble with you is you don’t know where your missus is.” Smith then said, “Why don’t you take me out and beat me up?” to which McLean said, “There is time enough for that later.” Smith, said Hurley, replied, “All right; at your place at 7pm,” tapping his watch at the same time. Hurley said that at closing time he saw McLean stagger back from a blow and then prepare to fight Smith, but the row was broken up. Questioned by Mr. J. P. Maloney (for McLean), Hurley said Smith was affected by drink. Joseph Augustine Doolan, carpenter, of Kyabram, said that early this year when Mrs. McLean left home McLean said to him, “I will shoot the -.” Doolan said he told McLean, “Don’t be a fool; no man is worthing hanging for.” To Mr. Maloney Doolan said he had no doubt that Smith was looking for a fight with McLean.



ON THIS DAY – March 6, 1959


Two youths were today found guilty of manslaughter of a Fitzroy newsagent by a Supreme Court jury, which acquitted them of murder. They were Kenneth Graham Wilson, 17, labourer, of Jarvie Street, East Brunswick, and John McLaren Hazeldine, 19, labourer, of Barkley Street, Brunswick. The jury acquitted Michael John Anthony Corcoran, 15, of both murder and manslaughter. The jury added a rider requesting that Wilson’s and Hazeldine’s ages should be taken into consideration when the penalty was being fixed. Mr. Justice Lowe remanded both for sentence after saying he would call for pre sentence reports on them. All three had pleaded not guilty to having murdered John Colin Beadles, 43, news agent, of Nicholson Street, Fitzroy. Beadles died in hospital on March 8 from injuries which, the Crown claimed, were inflicted when he was battered on the head at his shop on March 6.



ON THIS DAY – March 3, 1934


An inquiry into the death of Catherine Sarah Henrietta Worthington a married woman, aged 37, died on the 3rd of March 1934 through haemorrhage, caused by an illegal operation. Dr. Arthur Macarthur Lanphier, of Rosedale, was committed for trial at the Supreme Court, Melbourne, on the 16th of April on a charge of the murder. Bail was granted for a sum of £200 and one surety of £200.



ON THIS DAY – February 24, 1902


The trial of Richard Henry Wills for the alleged murder of Edward Woods at Dingee on February 24, commenced in Bendigo before Judge A’Beckett and a jury of twelve. All the evidence had been taken and Mr. Murphy had finished his address to the jury when the court adjourned at six o’clock. The evidence of Dr. Gaffney (who made the post-mortem) was to the effect that the blow causing death was struck while Woods was lying on the ground but Drs. Hugh, Boyd and Murphy called for the defence, are of contrary opinion, declaring it to be possible that the blow was struck as deceased was rising up. Wills has been calm in demeanour throughout. Wednesday Evening. The Dingee murder case was concluded in the Supreme Court at Bendigo today. Judge A’Beckett summed up impartially, and the jury after seven hours retirement returned a verdict of manslaughter. The prisoner was remanded for sentence.


ON THIS DAY – February 23, 1935


Zillah Rowe, aged 29, domestic, of Cohuna, who was charged before the Supreme Court with the murder of an unnamed child, on February 23, was found guilty of manslaughter. The jury added a strong recommendation to mercy. Evidence was given by Plainclothes Constable Trewarne that he went to a room in the Courthouse Hotel, Bendigo where Rowe was employed on the night of February 23. Upon searching the room he found a suitcase containing the body of a newly born child. A piece of cord was tied about its neck. Rowe in evidence said she had no recollection of any of the events which followed the time when she went to bed on the afternoon on February 23 feeling ill. She did not know she had given birth to a child. Rowe was remanded for sentence.


ON THIS DAY – February 22, 1934

At an inquest into the death of Mrs Gertrude May Leyshan aged 32 years formerly of Docker street Richmond at her home on the 22nd of February, the coroner (Mr D. Grant P.M.) committed May Allen, of Cremorne street Richmond for trial at the Supreme Court on the 16th of April on a charge of murder. Medical evidence was given that the cause of death was an illegal operation (abortion) . Bail was fixed at £250, with a surety of £250 inquest,


ON THIS DAY – February 16, 1924

Enquiry was made by the Coroner at the morgue into the death of Mrs. Amelia Frances Joyce (70), who was a visitor from Adelaide, and Miss Mary Wright (80), a retired school teacher, who lived in Victoria street, Abbottsford. Mrs Joyce and Miss Wright were are killed as the result of a charabanc, (convertible bus) driven by Stephens Harold Stephens, of South Yarra, plunging down an incline at the side of the Mount Dandenong road, between Montrose and Ferny Glen, on 16th of February. In the charabanc were 27 passengers, who were going from Croydon to an auction at the Perny Glen and Lovely View Estates, Mount Dandenong. Twelve of the passengers sustained injuries. The accident occurred about five miles from Croydon, George William Warne, of East Camberwell, a passenger by the charabanc, said that when they were approaching the spot where the accident occurred, the driver released his grip of the steering wheel, stood up, and looked around. Witness noted that the right front wheel then turned 40 degrees towards the left side of the road. The Coroner said that, in view of Warne’s evidence, there was a case which Stephens would have to answer. He found him guilty of manslaughter, and committed him for trial at the Supreme Court.



ON THIS DAY – February 8, 1952


With a strong recommendation for mercy on the grounds of his youth and upbringing, a Supreme Court jury at Bendigo found Walter George Atkins, 14, farm laborer, of Edgevale Road, Kew, guilty of having murdered Robert William Trewin, 40, grazier, and Mrs. Lydia Gordon Trewin, 60, of Kalpieuntmg, near Wycheproof, on February the 8th. Mr. Justice Coppel told Atkins that, since he was not 18 when the two crimes were committed, the law provided that he could only pass one sentence, that he be detained during the Governor’s pleasure. Accordingly, he sentenced Atkins on each count. Atkins, who pleaded not guilty, heard the verdict and sentence almost impassively. It was alleged by the Crown that Atkins shot Trewin when he was sacked for having failed to dig postholes, a job which Trewin had given him before leaving for the funeral, and later that he shot Mrs.Trewin because she was possibly a witness. Dr. H. Bearly of Beaumaris, a psychiatrist, said at the hearing that from the X-ray of the boy’s skull (he was thrown from a horse in 1950) and from what he had heard in the case, he would consider Atkins must have suffered some damage to the brain tissue under the fracture, and also possible damage to the frontal region, which governs behavior and deals chiefly with reasoning, judgment, and the higher intellect of our faculties.



ON THIS DAY – January 5, 2013

Murder victim Timothy O’Brien was struck up to 20 times. A man accused of attacking a 14-year-old autistic boy with an axe and telling him to “die c–t die” has been found guilty of murder. A Supreme Court jury on Friday found Joel Henderson had been part of a joint criminal enterprise with Darren Wilson to murder Timothy “Timmy” O’Brien at Scarsdale, near Ballarat, in January 2013. Timmy was struck up to 20 times with an axe when he went to help his stepfather, Peter Williams, who had been lured to a farmhouse by Wilson and Henderson, who planned to bash him. Mr Williams and Wilson were cousins who had had a falling out. Wilson was found guilty of murder by a Supreme Court jury and was jailed for 30 years and six months with a non-parole period of 26 years. In his closing address to the jury, Crown prosecutor Christopher Dane, QC, said Henderson tackled Timmy to the ground, “bashed him, throttled him, and whilst doing so said, “Die, c–t, die.” Henderson then hit Timmy with an axe before Wilson joined in. “Wilson takes up the axe and … finishes off what the accused [Henderson] has started … swinging an axe into Timmy’s skull,” Mr Dane said. “Together they killed the boy. Collectively the axe blows killed the child. “Not the first, not the last, because the first and the last can’t be identified. “Their handiwork together collectively carried out what this man [Henderson] wanted, “Die, c–t, die”, and he got what he wanted.” Defence barrister George Georgiou, SC, said Wilson had attacked Timmy separately from Henderson and there was no agreement between them to kill the boy. Mr Georgiou said Henderson’s partner, Lisa Trezise, told the jury Wilson began punching Timmy when she and Henderson were arguing. “She gave no evidence of there being any communication between Darren and Joel, no words, no looks, no gestures,” Mr Georgiou said. “He [Wilson] punched Timmy a number of times. One of the blows to the temple, according to her observations, knocked Timmy out. “She said that Darren then picked up the axe off the ground and used it to strike Timmy to the head several times. “She told you he struck with the sharp end of the axe, and whilst she didn’t keep count, she said at least five or six times. She said it was all happening very quickly and they were forceful blows. “She tried to intervene to stop Darren, but Darren struck her to the face, he threatened her, he threatened her with the axe in his hand.” Mr Georgiou said Wilson became involved after Timmy had earlier struck him to the head with a baseball bat when trying to help his stepfather. “He [Wilson] became involved in an angry and violent manner. “He even struck Lisa, threatened her, and he killed Timmy. Killed him with his five or six or more blows using the sharp end of the axe. He did not need any agreement with Joel Henderson to do that. He did it of his own volition.” Mr Georgiou said the evidence showed Henderson, having been hit over the head with the baseball bat by Timmy, lost his temper, chased the boy, caught him and assaulted him. “The fact that Darren Wilson subsequently came along and himself started to attack Timothy O’Brien does not mean that there was an agreement between them.” Trezise, who pleaded guilty to assisting an offender, recklessly causing injury and criminal damage after a murder charge was dropped, was sentenced to 21 months’ jail, wholly suspended. Justice Bernard Bongiorno will sentence Henderson at a later date.



ON THIS DAY – December 25, 1888

At the Melbourne Supreme Court, John Anglin was charged with the murder of his wife, Jemima Caroline, by shooting her at the residence of her brother in law, Mr Herbert John Rhodes, Inglesby road, Camberwell, on the 25th December. Anglin had been married to his wife for nine years before the murder. The accused was always exceedingly jealous of his wife, and strange and eccentric in his behaviour towards her, labouring under some delusion concerning her faithfulness. In consequence of that delusion, he used to strike her, and treated her abominably. She had ultimately to leave him, owing to his violence and jealously, mid supported herself by teaching music. At the time of the murder she was stopping with her sister, Mrs. Rhodes, at Camberwell. The prisoner called at the place on Christmas Day, and said he wanted to see his children Mr Rhodes ordered him away, and, as he did not leave, went to the yard and took an axe, with the view of frightening the prisoner away. On Mr Rhodes reappearing at the door with the axe in his hand, the accused shot at him, and on Mrs. Anglin coming out of the dining room into the passage to ascertain the cause of the discharge of firearms the prisoner shot her also, and followed her into the house, where he shot her again one of the bullets entering the lungs and causing her death. The accused then went away, and on being arrested said “I suppose I will be hung for this.” The frequent strange demeanour and behaviour of Anglin towards his wife would render it necessary for the jury to consider whether the prisoner was labouring under a delusion and was to some extent out of his mind, or whether he was sane and conscious of the awful deed he was committing when he murdered his wife. The remark which the accused made on being arrested went a long way to a reasonable man to show that he knew what he was doing when he killed his wife. Anglin received 16 years at Pentridge Prison. On passing sentence his Honour remarking that the question which they would have to consider was not whether the prisoner murdered his wife, but merely whether he was sane or insane at the time.