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  #1021  
Old 04-13-2017, 03:07 PM
AmericanSherlock AmericanSherlock is offline
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Originally Posted by RodCrosby View Post
If you focus on the uncontroverted evidence, the solution is clear, and would have led a jury to convict, I believe - had there been a proper charge which could have been made against Parry in 1931, which alas there may not have been owing to the technicalities of the law at that time.
Not clear at all.
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  #1022  
Old 04-14-2017, 12:20 AM
John G John G is offline
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In respect of Hall's evidence there are four possibilities. Firstly, she was lying, i.e. an attention seeker. Secondly, she was mistaken as to Wallace's identity. Thirdly, she saw Wallace but on a different day. Finally, she was telling the truth and her evidence was totally reliable.

Considering the alternatives, I think the first option can be discounted. Sometimes attention seekers do come forward and identify mysterious suspects, this seemed to happen a lot in the Whitechapel Murders of 1888, but I'm not personally aware of a single example of an attention seeker giving evidence against a named individual, let alone in a court of law-where the individual concerned was accused of murder- and whilst under oath. Moreover, there is the coincidence that the time given for the sighting was exactly the time you would have expected Wallace to be returning home, coupled with the fact that Hall must at least have been out that night, otherwise she could have been contradicted by witnesses.

Was it a case of mistaken identity? As noted in my earlier post, Hall claimed to have known Wallace for three years and he was very distinctive looking. And, importantly, whilst giving her evidence she would have seen the defendant sat in the dock, so at the very least she must surely have realized her mistake at that point. Nonetheless, when asked by counsel if she had any doubt about the man she saw being the accused she unequivocally replied: "No". There is the theoretical possibility of a Wallace look a like being present in the exact same area you would have expected Wallace to be at the time of the sighting, but it is submitted that the chances of that happening must be extremely remote. And if it did, why didn't this person, or the man he was seen speaking to, ever come forward?

Did she simply get the days mixed up? This again is highly unlikely. Thus, if that was the case why didn't Wallace point out that he had been speaking to someone at that time but it was on a different day? In fact, in this regard, the other person could have confirmed Wallace's account, thereby providing him with an alibi.

Which leaves us with only one remaining alternative.

Last edited by John G : 04-14-2017 at 12:25 AM.
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  #1023  
Old 04-14-2017, 01:03 AM
AmericanSherlock AmericanSherlock is offline
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Originally Posted by John G View Post
In respect of Hall's evidence there are four possibilities. Firstly, she was lying, i.e. an attention seeker. Secondly, she was mistaken as to Wallace's identity. Thirdly, she saw Wallace but on a different day. Finally, she was telling the truth and her evidence was totally reliable.

Considering the alternatives, I think the first option can be discounted. Sometimes attention seekers do come forward and identify mysterious suspects, this seemed to happen a lot in the Whitechapel Murders of 1888, but I'm not personally aware of a single example of an attention seeker giving evidence against a named individual, let alone in a court of law-where the individual concerned was accused of murder- and whilst under oath. Moreover, there is the coincidence that the time given for the sighting was exactly the time you would have expected Wallace to be returning home, coupled with the fact that Hall must at least have been out that night, otherwise she could have been contradicted by witnesses.

Was it a case of mistaken identity? As noted in my earlier post, Hall claimed to have known Wallace for three years and he was very distinctive looking. And, importantly, whilst giving her evidence she would have seen the defendant sat in the dock, so at the very least she must surely have realized her mistake at that point. Nonetheless, when asked by counsel if she had any doubt about the man she saw being the accused she unequivocally replied: "No". There is the theoretical possibility of a Wallace look a like being present in the exact same area you would have expected Wallace to be at the time of the sighting, but it is submitted that the chances of that happening must be extremely remote. And if it did, why didn't this person, or the man he was seen speaking to, ever come forward?

Did she simply get the days mixed up? This again is highly unlikely. Thus, if that was the case why didn't Wallace point out that he had been speaking to someone at that time but it was on a different day? In fact, in this regard, the other person could have confirmed Wallace's account, thereby providing him with an alibi.

Which leaves us with only one remaining alternative.
Hi John, is there a possibility where her testimony could be right, but Wallace could still be innocent? Or where he could be guilty, since he lied about it, but the guy he was seen talking to wasn't someone he was working with (and therefore he acted alone.)
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  #1024  
Old 04-14-2017, 08:35 AM
John G John G is offline
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Originally Posted by AmericanSherlock View Post
Hi John, is there a possibility where her testimony could be right, but Wallace could still be innocent? Or where he could be guilty, since he lied about it, but the guy he was seen talking to wasn't someone he was working with (and therefore he acted alone.)
Hi AS,

The problem is, if the person he spoke to had no involvement in Julia's death why did Wallace deny the conversation took place? And if it was a perfectly innocent conversation, why didn't the other person ever come forward?

Furthermore, if the conversation did relate to Julia's death, I struggle to see how we could infer anything other than a murder conspiracy. For instance, if the conspiracy was a robbery, which went wrong, surely the perpetrator is going to want to put a significant distance between himself and the scene of crime. He's certainly not going want to hang around the neighbourhood for several hours. And in this scenario what would be the point? To give Wallace an explanation perhaps? Well, you could just imagine how that conversation might go:

"Alright Wallace you really fooled me over the paltry some of insurance money that was in the house. By the way, everything went okay, apart from the fact I had to clobber your nosey wife. I think she's dead! And just remember, if you say anything it's my word against yours. Enjoy your day."

And, of course, if Wallace had been informed of such an unexpected turn of events he would have been totally distraught, which Johnson's evidence gives absolutely no indication of.

On the other hand, if murder was the objective of the conspiracy it's at least feasible that Wallace would have wanted confirmation. After all, something could have gone badly wrong, or the perpetrator may have decided not to go through with it. In which case, Wallace would have to amend his strategy once he reached home.

Finally, I consider it significant that Hall gave evidence in court, in contrast to Parkes. For instance, I see know way that the prosecution would have called her as a witness if there was any obvious doubt about her reliability. Also consider the fact that she was still utilized as a witness, despite the fact that her evidence, strongly suggestive of a conspiracy, undermined the police's narrative, i.e. that Wallace acted completely alone.

Last edited by John G : 04-14-2017 at 08:43 AM.
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  #1025  
Old 04-14-2017, 06:41 PM
AmericanSherlock AmericanSherlock is offline
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Originally Posted by John G View Post
Hi AS,

The problem is, if the person he spoke to had no involvement in Julia's death why did Wallace deny the conversation took place? And if it was a perfectly innocent conversation, why didn't the other person ever come forward?

Furthermore, if the conversation did relate to Julia's death, I struggle to see how we could infer anything other than a murder conspiracy. For instance, if the conspiracy was a robbery, which went wrong, surely the perpetrator is going to want to put a significant distance between himself and the scene of crime. He's certainly not going want to hang around the neighbourhood for several hours. And in this scenario what would be the point? To give Wallace an explanation perhaps? Well, you could just imagine how that conversation might go:

"Alright Wallace you really fooled me over the paltry some of insurance money that was in the house. By the way, everything went okay, apart from the fact I had to clobber your nosey wife. I think she's dead! And just remember, if you say anything it's my word against yours. Enjoy your day."

And, of course, if Wallace had been informed of such an unexpected turn of events he would have been totally distraught, which Johnson's evidence gives absolutely no indication of.

On the other hand, if murder was the objective of the conspiracy it's at least feasible that Wallace would have wanted confirmation. After all, something could have gone badly wrong, or the perpetrator may have decided not to go through with it. In which case, Wallace would have to amend his strategy once he reached home.

Finally, I consider it significant that Hall gave evidence in court, in contrast to Parkes. For instance, I see know way that the prosecution would have called her as a witness if there was any obvious doubt about her reliability. Also consider the fact that she was still utilized as a witness, despite the fact that her evidence, strongly suggestive of a conspiracy, undermined the police's narrative, i.e. that Wallace acted completely alone.
John,

I agree. It appears Hall's testimony cannot be as easily discounted as I previously thought.

My problem with Wallace working with someone or somebodies else is why couldn't he have done a better job with an alibi then. I already made this point which Caz originated about the night of the call to the chess club: he could have been AT the club. Some disagreed and gave somewhat plausible counterarguments. But there is NO explanation as far as I can see for Wallace coming home from work on the night of the murder, if he had hired someone else to commit it(rather than say making an early appointment time and creating his alibi upon leaving work...why come home until after his contrived search AT ALL?).

Without that in my mind, I could be persuaded to Wallace hiring other(s) to do it. I just can't reconcile it, but I'm open to counterarguments.

I was reading thru some earlier posts and another good point (think was Caz) also that was made in regards to how unlikely and unlucky it was for Wallace if he was truly innocent; the time Wallace left on the night of the murder. As has been pointed out and discussed many times before here: Close was late due to a fault on his bike that Wallace could not have foreseen. I don't think this is probative in anyway for Wallace's candidacy as the murderer because he would simply wait until the milk boy came and left to begin, creating his own time frame(this concept has been discussed ad nauseam here before). However, if he was truly innocent, then it was very bad luck for him that he didn't leave before the milk boy came, which was most likely around 6:37 or 6:38. Why wouldn't he, seeing he had a 7:30 business appointment and apparently didn't know where he was going exactly and hadn't consulted a map or anything? Another little trinket that appears to me to point to the fact that he needed the milk boy to come and leave. Of course, this could be coincidence, but there are so many of those in this case if Wallace was truly innocent, aren't there?

Then, if Wallace had really hired someone else, the point becomes again why leave himself in the frame like that?

Of course, the argument has been made that the milk boy is a bit of a red herring; could Wallace even really rely on him to give a reliable time? (as it turned out not really, even though I think we all incidentally agree on the time which was ascertained somewhat by chance by the other kids testimonies). That might be an argument against Wallace's guilt; however I propose an alternative is that if Wallace were guilty, he simply obviously needed the milk boy to come and leave whenever it was before enacting his murderous plot. Of course if the milk boy came too late, say close to 7, that might have foiled Wallace's plan, as it would look too suspicious to show up in the Menlove area so late.

The best argument I can come up with for Wallace working with others and still coming home on the night of the murder and not creating a better alibi for himself is this; maybe he had hired someone else to commit the murder much later and was relying on Macfall to give an accurate time. Then, maybe he would want to get everything in order and composed; tell Julia something to make sure she let the murderer in ("I think Marsden wanted to speak to me, he said he might stop by." or "If this Qualtrough comes looking for me, let him in.") Still, with time of death being an inaccurate science even nowadays, and Wallace being of scientific disposition, it is hard to imagine he would allow himself to be incriminated like that, when it could be so easily avoided if he had hired someone else to do the deed.

Last edited by AmericanSherlock : 04-14-2017 at 06:58 PM.
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  #1026  
Old 04-15-2017, 06:12 AM
RodCrosby RodCrosby is offline
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Where does dull, boring Wallace find a hitman in 1931 Liverpool? The Chess Club? The bowling green? Unless it's Parry - but that won't fly since Parry has an alibi for the time of the murder, and Wallace immediately names him as a suspect in any case...
Do hitmen operate on credit? There's no sign of Wallace having paid anyone a large sum before the murder...
Hall was simply mistaken, since by her own statement both men she claimed to have seen walked in directions away from Wolverton Street...
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  #1027  
Old 04-15-2017, 09:49 AM
John G John G is offline
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Originally Posted by RodCrosby View Post
Where does dull, boring Wallace find a hitman in 1931 Liverpool? The Chess Club? The bowling green? Unless it's Parry - but that won't fly since Parry has an alibi for the time of the murder, and Wallace immediately names him as a suspect in any case...
Do hitmen operate on credit? There's no sign of Wallace having paid anyone a large sum before the murder...
Hall was simply mistaken, since by her own statement both men she claimed to have seen walked in directions away from Wolverton Street...
According to Hall's statement, reproduced in Anthony's book, she doesn't mention seeing the men walk anywhere.

The question of how Wallace could have afforded a hit man is clearly valid, proving that nothing is simple about this case.

Could he have been misappropriating the insurance money? If he elected to do this I can imagine he would do a better job than Parry.
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  #1028  
Old 04-15-2017, 11:04 AM
RodCrosby RodCrosby is offline
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Hall's evidence is recorded differently in different sources. Goodman has an entirely different account to Gannon's. Wilkes has exchanges at the trial which do not appear in Wyndham-Brown [although that is admittedly an edited version of the trial]. Murphy merely describes Hall as "unintelligible."[p.86] Did Hall give more than one statement? One was supposed to be a letter delivered by hand to the Police by her father. She must have also made a formal written statement. What did she say at the committal hearing, as well as at the trial?

In 1931 in the UK, hitmen outside of organised crime were almost unheard of, and even then were extremely rare. Liverpool was not Chicago ! [although it has subsequently doubled for it on film...] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EfwTflepgTo

Oliver KC: [Was Wallace] Scrupulously honest ?
Crewe: Absolutely.

Oliver KC: What about his accounts, were they always in order ?
Crewe: Always to a penny.

Oliver KC: There was no question of his ever being wrong in his accounts ?
Crewe: None whatever.

Last edited by RodCrosby : 04-15-2017 at 11:08 AM.
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  #1029  
Old 04-15-2017, 01:08 PM
AmericanSherlock AmericanSherlock is offline
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Obviously the 4 pounds missing could have been payment, no? To be fair, this seems like a paltry amount for a contract killing. Or maybe like Gannon suggests, the other members of the plot also had motive for JW to be killed, or were blackmailed somehow.

My intuition tells me that Wallace would not have come home on the 20th if working with someone else.

Since the killer in the scenario of WHW being innocent would have been most likely stalking him and then made the call to the chess club, it's hard to imagine why he didn't strike that Monday night, rather than waiting for Tuesday. It doesn't appear he was strapped for time, if he had time to wait for Wallace to show up outside, leave, and then make the call. Once he saw WHW leave and was confident he had left for the chess club, why bother with the call, why not just strike then? Personally, I don't see how he could be confident for sure that WHW was going to the chess club, but if he really was as others suggest (and he would have to have been to rely on the call working anyway) then why this whole ruse for the next night?

The reason I have seen given; that he was not confident JW would let him without the "Qualtrough" pretext again relies on several things that are less than certain:

1. That WHW would get the message and decide to go without consulting a map (he could arguably see the address was wrong and still go and try the others, but the whole idea of him going seems tenuous)

2. That Wallace would tell JW about it and she would remember the name

3. That she would let someone in under that name, when she otherwise wouldn't let someone in. (If she was so out of it, why couldn't "Qualtrough" come up with some other far less unreliable and convoluted subtext to enter the Monday night; he could claim he was an old friend of WHW's etc.)

It also assumes someone intimate with the Wallace's as part of the plot, which is why Parry is fingered as the caller and mastermind. But why wouldn't Parry do it himself, without the whole ruse? WHW himself said Julia would let him in, why couldn't he try to rob JW himself if she was such an easy, clueless target? You could argue Parry would be caught too easily as it would be obvious what happened, but then how could he get someone else to take that risk instead of him? Even if such a person was unknown to JW, I can't imagine he, who would very likely be a face around town, being comfortable with robbing the place and showing his face to JW so obviously. Unless you think this "Qualtrough" was planning to kill, which is pretty unlikely IMO. It seems adding another person to the plot is desperately trying to make the pieces fit, since we know Parry had a reasonable alibi for the night of the murder, yet it seems he made the call.

I still think WHW was guilty.

Last edited by AmericanSherlock : 04-15-2017 at 01:13 PM.
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  #1030  
Old 04-15-2017, 02:31 PM
RodCrosby RodCrosby is offline
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Some of your points are irrelevant, AS.

How many crimes fail at the first hurdle? We don't know, because we never get to hear about them ! The tragedy for all concerned here was that an audacious plan actually worked, until it then went disastrously wrong...

"Qualtrough" was the open-sesame - the code-word - the only chance for anyone unknown to Julia to enter the house, and rob. A friend might gain entrance without it, but a "friend" wouldn't bother since he would know his guilt as a robber would be immediately apparent.

So Monday was no good for two reasons.
a) Julia would not have yet heard of WHW's appointment with "Qualtrough".
b) Secondarily, as you say, no-one could be sure where Wallace was going on the Monday. The presumption would be that he was going to the Chess Club, but at that point it was only a presumption.

Question: What do you think Parry did on the Monday night?
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