Billington. Victorian Executioner by Alison Bruce

By Alison Bruce

James Billington, previously a pub entertainer after which a barber, were single-minded in his decision to safe the put up of executioner for London and the house Counties. yet did he feel he was once basically a profit to society and justice, or have been his purposes for in need of this place extra own? 3 of his sons, Thomas, William and John, in his footsteps and jointly the family members have been accountable for 235 executions in nice Britain among 1884 and 1905. Billington: Victorian Executioner presents a whole account of the tales in the back of James Billington's 151 executions, in addition to introducing the reader to the true guy at the back of the rope. This interesting biography is a thrilling addition to any real crime bookshelf.

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Sample text

Mary asked. ‘I suppose it isn’t or it is,’ was the cryptic reply. ’ ‘I am as innocent as you are,’ Ann claimed. She then went on to explain that she had gone into her coal cellar early on Monday morning and found a ‘bundle’, she touched it and realised in horror that it was a body. ’ He claimed the murder had been committed by someone named Jack with whom he’d been drinking. Ann said that although she had kept it secret she had neither eaten nor slept, and to Mary’s horror told her that she had purchased some chloride of lime which she had placed on the body to mask the smell.

Mr Charles Mellor initially argued that there was insufficient evidence to charge the prisoners with murder and suggested that the charge should be altered to being ‘accessories after the fact’. After some debate the judge decided that they should be first tried with being accessories and if found guilty they could subsequently be tried for murder. Mr Mellor persuaded the judge that the prisoners should be tried separately, and Ann Turner was tried first on a charge ‘that she did feloniously receive, harbour, maintain and assist the murder and removal of the body’.

Walter Turner was a thirty-two-year-old mill worker. He had started renting the house in Back Lane in March 1891, which was when his mother began to live with him. Ann was a widow and Walter was separated from his wife Helen. The house was a former pub and stood out because it still had the bracket on the wall from which the pub sign had once hung. Neither Ann nor Walter was happy with the accommodation and complained about damp and rats. On the morning of Barbara’s disappearance one of Mrs Turner’s visits was to Mary Ann Robinson, wife of Abraham Robinson, who was the owner of the Back Lane property.

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