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  #121  
Old 06-15-2016, 10:19 PM
Rosella Rosella is offline
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The Liverpool police force had an awful reputation between the wars for corruption, brutality and blundering investigations. Some of the latter can be seen in the Wallace case, where furniture was moved in the murder room to take photos, Wallace's raincoat was removed from under Julia's body before it could be photographed in situ, items weren't fingerprinted etc etc. I think the detectives investigating thought the victim's husband was the man and didn't look any further.

PD James's theory that Wallace impersonated his wife in front of the milk boy with a shawl and a dress on is frankly ridiculous. Wallace was over 6 feet tall, Julia was petite, Wallace also had a thick moustache. Julia spoke to the milk boy, who knew her by sight, urging him to get back home out of the cold. He saw her face.

Last edited by Rosella : 06-15-2016 at 10:22 PM.
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  #122  
Old 06-16-2016, 01:20 AM
ColdCaseJury ColdCaseJury is offline
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I would still like to know why anyone would wish Julia Wallace dead.
Graham, motive is the red herring in this case. We have insufficient evidence to attribute a motive to anyone, even William Wallace*. The fact is that someone did kill Julia Wallace. Given the evidence we have, where does it most likely point?

* I would agree that it is easier to suspect a spouse - after all, much lies beneath a marriage that is unseen - but this is different to having grounds to believe there was such bitterness to move a man to murder his wife. Indeed, many witnesses thought that the Wallaces were a loving couple.

Last edited by ColdCaseJury : 06-16-2016 at 01:24 AM.
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  #123  
Old 06-16-2016, 01:34 AM
ColdCaseJury ColdCaseJury is offline
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It is only Wallace's word that he(Wallace) left at 6.45.There is nothing to support it.
No one observed Wallace leaving his house, this is true. Wallace was observed boarding a tram at 7:06pm by the conductor. The police accepted this as a fixed point in the timeline.

In my book, I show that Wallace could not have left his house later than 6:48pm.

IF Alan Close called at 6:45pm, then clearly Wallace did NOT have enough time to do every alleged of him.

IF Alan Close called at just before 6:40pm - the time that I believe is most strongly supported by the evidence - then in my judgement I do not think Wallace had enough time. Others may reach a different judgement on the last point.

Almost certainly. Alan Close did NOT call at 6:31pm.

This timing, and indeed the timing of Wallace reaching the chess club, are crucial, objective bits of evidence in this case, and are given due weight in my book for the Cold Case Jury to consider.
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  #124  
Old 06-16-2016, 03:46 AM
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caz caz is offline
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Maybe the point is that without any obvious motive the best suspect would still always be the spouse, whether acting alone if time allowed or with help if not. There can sometimes be very deeply felt resentment in a marriage (believe me I've been there, done that and got the T shirt - I put up with nearly 30 years of verbal abuse behind closed doors before finally plucking up the courage to vote with my feet) which can be equally deeply hidden from the outside world - and from the wife or husband - which is an obvious advantage to any spouse harbouring murderous thoughts. My own extended on occasion to dark jokes about "greasing the stairs", so I'd have been in trouble if I had been less discreet and he had fallen down them while I was still around.

The age difference would be fairly unusual these days, let alone back then, so I have to wonder if that had something to do with it. Did Wallace fear she would soon become an unwelcome burden, and did he have to keep up a pretence that he would always have loved and looked after her?

Love,

Caz
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Last edited by caz : 06-16-2016 at 03:53 AM.
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  #125  
Old 06-16-2016, 03:58 AM
ColdCaseJury ColdCaseJury is offline
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Originally Posted by Rosella View Post
I think the detectives investigating thought the victim's husband was the man and didn't look any further..
Undoubtedly, this is the case. A former Chief Superintendent, a friend of mine, told me that a key principle of detection is TIE:

Trace and

Eliminate OR Incriminate.

This means ALL suspects must be carefully vetted with the aim of eliminating them from the inquiry (or incriminating them).

In the Wallace case the police (negligently) FAILED to eliminate or incriminate potential suspects, most notably Parry. Crucially, they knew Parry had misled them concerning his whereabouts on the night of the call, but did NOT follow up. Hence, Parry was never properly eliminated from the inquiry.
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  #126  
Old 06-16-2016, 04:08 AM
Graham Graham is offline
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There are very cogent arguments in the recent posts, but one thing which strikes me is that Wallace's general character does not seem to tally with that of someone who would use brutal and excessive force; or force at all, in fact. If he did decide to do away with Julia, I rather think that a dose of poison would be more in his line. And as he had a home chemistry lab, chances are that he could easily have come up with something nasty.

Graham
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  #127  
Old 06-16-2016, 04:28 AM
ColdCaseJury ColdCaseJury is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graham View Post
There are very cogent arguments in the recent posts, but one thing which strikes me is that Wallace's general character does not seem to tally with that of someone who would use brutal and excessive force; or force at all, in fact. If he did decide to do away with Julia, I rather think that a dose of poison would be more in his line. And as he had a home chemistry lab, chances are that he could easily have come up with something nasty.
I agree. Although his reserved "geeky" character certainly does not rule out violence by any means, I think a person like Wallace would more likely be a poisoner; something less direct.
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  #128  
Old 06-16-2016, 04:33 AM
ColdCaseJury ColdCaseJury is offline
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Originally Posted by caz View Post
Maybe the point is that without any obvious motive the best suspect would still always be the spouse, whether acting alone if time allowed or with help if not.
I agree, spouses are almost always suspects in domestic murders, but it is not evidence in itself.
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  #129  
Old 06-16-2016, 06:48 AM
Mayerling Mayerling is offline
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Given the discussion on this thread of how police attention is always directed towards the surviving spouse first, I was considering what recent examples of notorious English murder cases involving spouses offing spouses the Liverpool police could consider:

There are 4.

1) the Crippen Case

2) the Harold Greenwood Case

3) the Armstrong Case

4) the Thompson - Byswater Case

As a potential model the last would not apply too well - Edith Thompson was tried with her lover Freddy Byswater for the murder of her husband Percy. Never in the investigation against Wallace was there any suggestion he had a lover on the side.

Crippen did have Miss Le Neve (and Cora had several boyfriends) but the case really involves several strands, most notably Cora's contemptuous treatment of the seemingly mild mannered Hawley. Similarly Herbert Armstrong had a domineering wife, who would frequently - possibly without thinking of it - make demeaning comments to him in front of others (he needed to take a bath, she'd tell him in front of his friends). Armstong also had various affairs, and even picked up venereal disease at one point. But the financial aspect of his case (regarding the questionable will over Mrs. Armstrong's property), and his apparent attack on a rival solicitor were not involved in any similar fashion in the Wallace Case.

Harold Greenwood's case (oddly enough the only other solicitor tried for wife murder - and just prior to Armstrong) seemed pegged on finances too. However it was a far weaker case than the other three mentioned, and Greenwood was acquitted. But curiously he never really recovered, and like Wallace died within two to six years after his public ordeal.

As one looks over these three cases, certainly Wallace's situation is closest to Greenwood's in the issue of his relationship (as known publicly) to his wife. He never was raked over the coals by Julia like Crippen and Armstrong were regularly by their wives. Indeed, there were stories that Percy Thompson was jealous of Edith for her business success and intelligence, and may have been brutal towards her (rather similar to stories regarding the relationship of James and Florence Maybrick). If the Wallaces had similar problems they are really buried, but from reading of them they just sound like a fairly contented couple.

By the way, regarding the issue of Wallace being frightened of how he'd care with an aging Julia, one should consider Wallace's own health problems. He died in 1933 of (I believe) a kidney ailment - invariably fatal in that period. He may have known of it in 1931, and as a result wondered what would happen to Julia when he was gone. Problem with this theory is that if he genuinely was scared for her sake, and considered a "mercy killing", he certainly picked a really horrendously horrible way of doing it - poison would have been (no irony intended here) possibly more humane.

Jeff
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  #130  
Old 06-16-2016, 07:40 AM
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caz caz is offline
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Hi Jeff, CCJ, Graham, All,

My mum always wore the trousers in our house, and was strict with me and my brothers, while my dad never said boo to a goose and was all for a quiet life. I don't recall my parents ever really arguing, just the odd cross word quickly forgotten. So it shocked me to the core when I visited one day in later life, when my mum's dementia was getting bad and saw how my dad was struggling to cope. I had a very young daughter at the time and don't drive so I wasn't much use on a day to day basis, but my dad had carers in twice a day to help and he wasn't one to make a fuss. I saw him lose it with mum on this occasion and I had to intervene at one point to stop him hitting her. He was clearly at the end of his tether and we quickly got mum into a nursing home where she got the specialist care she badly needed, while my dad was able to get some peace at last in the house he loved.

Love,

Caz
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