The Trial Of William Herbert Wallace PDF By Wyndham Brown

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The Trial Of William Herbert Wallac

There are certain cases in which the nature of the crime, and the personal history and general behavior of the accused, make any further considerations as to the character of relative unimportance.

There are other cases, in particular where there is an absence of any apparent motive, and when the crime has been premeditated.

In which the character and temperament of the accused are of the greatest interest and significance.

One of the many remarkable features of the Wallace trial was to be found in the contrast provided between the excessive, and, even.

Maniacal violence with which the murder was committed, and the evidence which was given by various witnesses of the peaceful and good-natured disposition of the prisoner.

One witness for the prosecution regarded him as a placid man,” and another as an absolute gentleman in every respect.”

There was no evidence that there had ever been any friction or serious disagreement between him and his wife.

On the contrary, several witnesses testified to the happiness and placidity of their life together.

One witness described them as “a happy couple, a very happy couple,” and another was of the opinion that Wallace’s relations with his wife were ” the best possible.

They appeared to be all in all to one another,” and yet a third witness stated that he had always regarded them as a very loving couple, and very affectionate.”

Wallace, himself, in the diaries he kept for the years preceding the murder, refers on many occasions to the affection he feels for his wife.

His anxiety concerning her health, and the happiness, they experience together.¹

The following passages may be quoted for the double purpose of throwing light on the character of Wallace and also for their references to his wife:

March 25th, 1929. “Julia reminds me today it was fifteen years ago yesterday since we were married. Well, I don’t think either of us regrets the step.

We seem to have pulled well together, and I think we both get as much pleasure and contentment out of life like most people.”

The following day, January 20th, Wallace was engaged on the work of his company, and, according to his evidence, returned to his home a little after six o’clock.

It was admitted by the prosecution that if Wallace committed the murder it must have been between 6.30 and about 6.50, and it is, therefore, at this point that the question of time becomes of considerable importance.

We next hear of him from a witness for the prosecution, a corporation tram conductor, when he boarded a tram-car at the junction of Smithdown Road and Lodge Lane between 7.6 p.m. and 7.10 p.m. on the same evening.

In his evidence, Wallace stated that he left his house to keep his appointment with ‘‘ Qualtrough ” in Menlove Gardens EAST at 6.45 p.m.,

and there is little doubt, in view of the independent evidence, that he must have been on his way to Lodge Lane at the latest by 6.50. At the hour of 6.30, and possibly even a little later, a boy called Close had delivered milk at 29 Wolverton Street, and had seen and spoken to Mrs. Wallace, That was the last occasion on which she was seen alive.

The evidence as to Wallace’s movements a little later in the Menlove Avenue district of Liverpool is fairly clear.

He enquired from several people one of whom was a Liverpool police constable as to the direction of MenloveGardens east, and was told on three occasions that there was no such address.

The prosecution laid considerable stress on the number of enquiries and personal remarks made to these witnesses and to the tram conductors as indicating his intention of establishing a prearranged alibi.

It was asked, in particular, why, having been informed on two occasions that Menlove Gardens East did not exist, he should have taken the trouble to go into a newsagent’s shop for the purpose of examining a local directory, and to inform the manageress of the shop as to the reason of his being in the district.

The next witnesses to speak as to Wallace’s actions on that night were two neighbours, Mr. and Mrs. Johnston, who saw him close to the back door of 29 Wolverton Street at 8.45 p.m.

Wallace asked them if they had heard anything unusual that evening from his house, and they replied that they had not. He then said, I have tried the back door and the front, and they are locked against me.”

It was suggested that he should try again, and, in the presence of the two witnesses, he then opened the yard door, walked up to the door leading into the kitchen, and said, “ It opens now,” and went into the house.

The Johnstons waited outside, and in a few moments Wallace returned and said to them, in a voice which Mrs. Johnston described as distressed and agitated — Come and see ; she has been killed.”

AuthorWF Wyndham Brown
PDF Size20.7 MB


The Trial Of William Herbert Wallace Book PDF Free Download

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