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ON THIS DAY – July 15, 1945

The jury returned a verdict of not guilty when Mrs. Ruby Nina Carlos, 56, of Myrtle-street, South Yarra, a widow, was charged with the murder of Corporal Vera Matilda Wiper. W.A.A.A.F., 23, of Adelaide. A previous jury had failed to agree on the verdict. Corporal Wiper’s body, was found in Burgess-street, Hawthorn, on July 15. A post-mortem examination revealed that death was due to shock, following an attempted illegal operation. The jury, in reply to questions, said they agreed the accused woman had used an instrument on the girl to procure miscarriage, but they did not believe death had resulted from this action. Mr. Justice Gavin Duffy then directed them to return a verdict of not guilty.

ON THIS DAY – June 29, 1951

A doctor told a Criminal Court jury today that a young doctor’s widow, charged with the murder of her five months old blind daughter, had said she had been extremely unhappy in her married life, and did not want any association in her home with the baby. The widow, Joan Isobel Gorr, 27, of Gore Street, Fitzroy, has pleaded not guilty to having murdered her baby daughter in Melbourne on June 30. Yesterday, the Crown Prosecutor (Mr. P. R. Nelson) told the jury that Mrs. Gorr had admitted to police she had suffocated her child because she did not want it to go through life blind. A post-mortem revealed that the baby had been asphyxiated. Sister Evelyn Constance Ross, Matron of Tweedle Hospital, Footscray, said today that on June 29, Mrs. Gorr told her she was very pleased that she was able to take he baby away from the hospital. Mrs. Gorr arrived next day to take the child away, but fainted as she was carrying it away. Both Mrs. Gorr and the child were kept at the hospital for a couple of hours. Sister Ross said she believed Mrs. Gorr had had a curette operation a day or two before June 30. Mrs. Gorr had made no comment about the child looking ill when she again left with it later in the day. Stannus Hedger, of the Royal Institute for the Blind, and Dr. C. W. Bennett, the institute’s hon. doctor today gave evidence of a conference with Mrs. Gorr at which it was suggested that the child should be taken permanently into the institute. Dr. Bennett said Mrs. Gorr had told him she could not bear to look at the blind child, but the reason she gave him why she did not want it was that she had been extremely unhappy in her married life, and did not want any association in her home with the baby. He said Mrs. Gorr seemed to discuss matters calmly, but he did not think she was in a frame of mind fit to make any decision about the future of the child.

ON THIS DAY – November 11, 1917

A sodden photograph dredged from the Goulburn gave the first clue to the identity of a murderer who used many names.   On a warm and drowsy summer Sunday afternoon – November 18,1917- a soldier on leave from Seymour Camp, four miles away, rested after a long walk. He leaned on the rail of the old wooden bridge which spans the river at this peaceful spot. He was gazing down idly at the rolling waters in a really Arcadian setting which nobody would associate with violence or murder.   As he watched the moving water he saw what he thought was a dark weed waving its strands near the surface. But then the supposed weed moved suddenly to reveal the white neck and to become the floating dark hair of a young girl. She appeared to be afloat head downwards, but it was clear that her body was held by a river snag.

When the dead girl was taken from the river she was found to have been about 12 years old. Her head had been battered savagely above the right ear, apparently by the back of a hatchet. Identification came swiftly. She was Rose Taylor, who with her widowed mother, Mrs Margaret Taylor, had arrived in Seymour from Bendigo about three weeks earlier.  A fall in the river level next exposed a mud bank, and there lay a small hatchet which proved later to be the murder weapon. The detectives felt sure that the girl had been battered to death under the bridge. There, however, all they found was litter left behind by picnic parties. They had no idea where the girl’s mother, Mrs Margaret Taylor, might be, or even whether she was still alive. All they knew about her was that she formally lived in North Melbourne.

27 November 1917

After investigations extending over seven days the detectives working on the mysterious Trawool tragedy succeeded in tracing Private Arthur Geoffrey Oldring, the machine gunner, who disappeared from the Seymour camp last Monday. He was found on Saturday afternoon, working at an orchard in the fruit growing district of Lancaster, about 15 miles from Tatura. On being arrested Oldring was hand cuffed and taken to Tatura by motor car and then on to Seymour by train. Later on in the evening two distinct charges were laid against, him of having murdered Margaret Taylor and her daughter, Rose Taylor, at Trawool on or about November 10 or 11. On Sunday afternoon Oldring was taken to Melbourne in the custody of De-tectives Naphine and Sullivan, and was lodged in the City Watch-house.

ON THIS DAY – October 7, 1933

 

Before Mr. Bond; P M., at the City Court yesterday, Percy Horatio Sydney Barnard, aged 56 years, was charged with having  murdered Cornelius Percival Smith at Cheltenham on October 7. Ivy Margaret Smith, aged 41 years, Percy Smith’s widow, was charged that, knowing Barnard to have murdered Smith, she did receive, comfort, harbour, assist, and maintain Barnard.A remand was granted in each case until October 22. Mrs. Smith was allowed bail in a surety of £200. Mr Bond P M refused to hear an application for bail by Barnard.

 

 

ON THIS DAY – July 15, 1945

The jury returned a verdict of not guilty when Mrs. Ruby Nina Carlos, 56, of Myrtle-street, South Yarra, a widow, was charged with the murder of Corporal Vera Matilda Wiper. W.A.A.A.F., 23, of Adelaide. A previous jury had failed to agree on the verdict. Corporal Wiper’s body, was found in Burgess-street, Hawthorn, on July 15. A post-mortem examination revealed that death was due to shock, following an attempted illegal operation. The jury, in reply to questions, said they agreed the accused woman had used an instrument on the girl to procure miscarriage, but they did not believe death had resulted from this action. Mr. Justice Gavin Duffy then directed them to return a verdict of not guilty.

ON THIS DAY – June 29, 1951

A doctor told a Criminal Court jury today that a young doctor’s widow, charged with the murder of her five months old blind daughter, had said she had been extremely unhappy in her married life, and did not want any association in her home with the baby. The widow, Joan Isobel Gorr, 27, of Gore Street, Fitzroy, has pleaded not guilty to having murdered her baby daughter in Melbourne on June 30. Yesterday, the Crown Prosecutor (Mr. P. R. Nelson) told the jury that Mrs. Gorr had admitted to police she had suffocated her child because she did not want it to go through life blind. A post-mortem revealed that the baby had been asphyxiated. Sister Evelyn Constance Ross, Matron of Tweedle Hospital, Footscray, said today that on June 29, Mrs. Gorr told her she was very pleased that she was able to take he baby away from the hospital. Mrs. Gorr arrived next day to take the child away, but fainted as she was carrying it away. Both Mrs. Gorr and the child were kept at the hospital for a couple of hours. Sister Ross said she believed Mrs. Gorr had had a curette operation a day or two before June 30. Mrs. Gorr had made no comment about the child looking ill when she again left with it later in the day. Stannus Hedger, of the Royal Institute for the Blind, and Dr. C. W. Bennett, the institute’s hon. doctor today gave evidence of a conference with Mrs. Gorr at which it was suggested that the child should be taken permanently into the institute. Dr. Bennett said Mrs. Gorr had told him she could not bear to look at the blind child, but the reason she gave him why she did not want it was that she had been extremely unhappy in her married life, and did not want any association in her home with the baby. He said Mrs. Gorr seemed to discuss matters calmly, but he did not think she was in a frame of mind fit to make any decision about the future of the child.

On This Day ……. 6th April 1915

Mr William Farquhar, a warder of the Geelong Gaol, died “in harness” on this day day in 1915, while on duty in one of the towers overlooking the exercise yard. The warden on duty in the opposite corner had missed Mr. Farquhar for sometime, and when he visited his tower found him dying. Deceased had been under treatment by the gaol medical officer for two years for heart, trouble, and had been always a signed tower duty because of it. His death was not unexpected, but his sticking ability to do his duty had won the admiration of his colleagues. Farquhar was a married man and native of Scotland, and left a widow and children.

 

ON THIS DAY – March 2, 1953

NORTH MELBOURNE

Melbourne homicide detectives charged a 56 year-old Greek with the murder of Mrs. Everdike Politis, 55, at North Melbourne on the 2nd of March 1953. Mrs. Palitis. a widow, was found lying in the front bed room of her home. She had been stabbed.

 

 

ON THIS DAY – November 11, 1917

A sodden photograph dredged from the Goulburn gave the first clue to the identity of a murderer who used many names.   On a warm and drowsy summer Sunday afternoon – November 18,1917- a soldier on leave from Seymour Camp, four miles away, rested after a long walk. He leaned on the rail of the old wooden bridge which spans the river at this peaceful spot. He was gazing down idly at the rolling waters in a really Arcadian setting which nobody would associate with violence or murder.   As he watched the moving water he saw what he thought was a dark weed waving its strands near the surface. But then the supposed weed moved suddenly to reveal the white neck and to become the floating dark hair of a young girl. She appeared to be afloat head downwards, but it was clear that her body was held by a river snag.

When the dead girl was taken from the river she was found to have been about 12 years old. Her head had been battered savagely above the right ear, apparently by the back of a hatchet. Identification came swiftly. She was Rose Taylor, who with her widowed mother, Mrs Margaret Taylor, had arrived in Seymour from Bendigo about three weeks earlier.  A fall in the river level next exposed a mud bank, and there lay a small hatchet which proved later to be the murder weapon. The detectives felt sure that the girl had been battered to death under the bridge. There, however, all they found was litter left behind by picnic parties. They had no idea where the girl’s mother, Mrs Margaret Taylor, might be, or even whether she was still alive. All they knew about her was that she formally lived in North Melbourne.

27 November 1917

After investigations extending over seven days the detectives working on the mysterious Trawool tragedy succeeded in tracing Private Arthur Geoffrey Oldring, the machine gunner, who disappeared from the Seymour camp last Monday. He was found on Saturday afternoon, working at an orchard in the fruit growing district of Lancaster, about 15 miles from Tatura. On being arrested Oldring was hand cuffed and taken to Tatura by motor car and then on to Seymour by train. Later on in the evening two distinct charges were laid against, him of having murdered Margaret Taylor and her daughter, Rose Taylor, at Trawool on or about November 10 or 11. On Sunday afternoon Oldring was taken to Melbourne in the custody of De-tectives Naphine and Sullivan, and was lodged in the City Watch-house.

ON THIS DAY – October 7, 1933

 

Before Mr. Bond; P M., at the City Court yesterday, Percy Horatio Sydney Barnard, aged 56 years, was charged with having  murdered Cornelius Percival Smith at Cheltenham on October 7. Ivy Margaret Smith, aged 41 years, Percy Smith’s widow, was charged that, knowing Barnard to have murdered Smith, she did receive, comfort, harbour, assist, and maintain Barnard.A remand was granted in each case until October 22. Mrs. Smith was allowed bail in a surety of £200. Mr Bond P M refused to hear an application for bail by Barnard.

 

 

ON THIS DAY – July 15, 1945

The jury returned a verdict of not guilty when Mrs. Ruby Nina Carlos, 56, of Myrtle-street, South Yarra, a widow, was charged with the murder of Corporal Vera Matilda Wiper. W.A.A.A.F., 23, of Adelaide. A previous jury had failed to agree on the verdict. Corporal Wiper’s body, was found in Burgess-street, Hawthorn, on July 15. A post-mortem examination revealed that death was due to shock, following an attempted illegal operation. The jury, in reply to questions, said they agreed the accused woman had used an instrument on the girl to procure miscarriage, but they did not believe death had resulted from this action. Mr. Justice Gavin Duffy then directed them to return a verdict of not guilty.

ON THIS DAY – June 29, 1951

A doctor told a Criminal Court jury today that a young doctor’s widow, charged with the murder of her five months old blind daughter, had said she had been extremely unhappy in her married life, and did not want any association in her home with the baby. The widow, Joan Isobel Gorr, 27, of Gore Street, Fitzroy, has pleaded not guilty to having murdered her baby daughter in Melbourne on June 30. Yesterday, the Crown Prosecutor (Mr. P. R. Nelson) told the jury that Mrs. Gorr had admitted to police she had suffocated her child because she did not want it to go through life blind. A post-mortem revealed that the baby had been asphyxiated. Sister Evelyn Constance Ross, Matron of Tweedle Hospital, Footscray, said today that on June 29, Mrs. Gorr told her she was very pleased that she was able to take he baby away from the hospital. Mrs. Gorr arrived next day to take the child away, but fainted as she was carrying it away. Both Mrs. Gorr and the child were kept at the hospital for a couple of hours. Sister Ross said she believed Mrs. Gorr had had a curette operation a day or two before June 30. Mrs. Gorr had made no comment about the child looking ill when she again left with it later in the day. Stannus Hedger, of the Royal Institute for the Blind, and Dr. C. W. Bennett, the institute’s hon. doctor today gave evidence of a conference with Mrs. Gorr at which it was suggested that the child should be taken permanently into the institute. Dr. Bennett said Mrs. Gorr had told him she could not bear to look at the blind child, but the reason she gave him why she did not want it was that she had been extremely unhappy in her married life, and did not want any association in her home with the baby. He said Mrs. Gorr seemed to discuss matters calmly, but he did not think she was in a frame of mind fit to make any decision about the future of the child.